Judge Hears Lawsuit to Stop Arkansas From De-Funding Planned Parenthood

State   |   Sarah Zagorski   |   Sep 18, 2015   |   5:43PM   |   Little Rock, AR

In Arkansas, Planned Parenthood of the Heartland (PPH) has asked a federal court to stop the state’s Department of Human Services from terminating their contracts with Medicaid. As LifeNews previously reported, the suit follows two Planned Parenthood suits against Louisiana and Alabama after those states decided to de-fund Planned Parenthood. PPH has abortion facilities in Arkansas, Iowa, Nebraska and eastern Oklahoma.

In a press release last month, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he was ending state contracts with the abortion company after videos surfaced showing their top executives haggling over the price of aborted babies’ body parts, admitting to altering abortion procedures to procure salable organs for harvesting and casually discussing ways their doctors can “crush” unborn babies to obtain fully intact parts.

Gov. Hutchinson said the following about the abortion company: “It is apparent that after the recent revelations on the actions of Planned Parenthood, that this organization does not represent the values of the people of our state and Arkansas is better served by terminating any and all existing contracts with them. This includes their affiliated organization, Planned Parenthood of Arkansas and Eastern Oklahoma. I appreciate the legislature’s leadership on this important issue, especially that of Senator Eddie Joe Williams and Representative David Meeks.”

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In a few of the most recent Planned Parenthood expose’ videos, the abortion company was caught harvesting the brain of an aborted baby who was still alive, and the tenth video shows Planned Parenthood officials discussing the sale of specific body parts, including the heart, eyes and “gonads” of unborn babies.

On September 14th, legal counsel for PPH said ending their contract with Medicaid would cause irreparably damage to their organization and will make their facilities turn away Medicaid patients. However, the state argued that Planned Parenthood can keep seeing patients and get reimbursed later if their contract is reinstated.

ABC News reports that PPH has asked Judge Christine Baker to grant a restraining order and a preliminary injunction, which would keep their Medicaid contract valid. The judge has decided to not to rule from the bench and will issue a ruling later.

In August, Arkansas Democratic Rep. Mike Holcomb of Pine Buff changed his party affiliation largely because of his party’s support for Planned Parenthood in light of revelations about their organ harvesting business. He said, “I’ve chosen to join the Republican Party because I firmly believe that the conservative values they represent best align with my own personal beliefs and convictions. I believe in the sanctity of life. I believe in traditional marriage. I believe in helping Arkansans. Moving forward, I am excited to caucus and work with my fellow Republican legislators as we focus on Arkansas—her needs, values, and future.”

Rep. Holcomb served the state of Arkansas as a Jefferson Country District Judge and spent 28 years in public education. In the state, he represents District 10, which includes parts of Cleveland, Jefferson, Grant, Lincoln and Drew counties. Currently, he is the vice chairman of the House Committee on Public Transportation. His decision to switch parties will give Republicans a 64-35-1 majority in the House and a 24-11 majority in the Senate. In 2012, Republicans took control of the Arkansas House and Senate.