Mississippi is one step closer to defunding Planned Parenthood and other abortion groups in the state.
On Tuesday, the state House voted 77-37 to approve a bill that would stop state Medicaid funding from going to any facility that does elective abortions or is affiliated with a group that does, The Clarion-Ledger reports.
Mississippi Senate Bill 2238 passed the state Senate earlier this month, LifeNews reported. Modeled after Texas legislation, the bill was introduced after pro-life legislators witnessed the shocking revelations in the undercover videos showing Planned Parenthood officials selling aborted babies’ body parts.
State Rep. Joey Hood, R-Ackerman, amended the bill Tuesday before it passed, taking out Planned Parenthood’s name and replacing it with language prohibiting any abortion group in the state from receiving taxpayer funds, according to the report.
The bill faced some opposition in the state House, with one pro-abortion legislator calling it a “waste of time.” They contended that Planned Parenthood in Mississippi does not do abortions, and the abortion group received less than $600 in taxpayer money in the past five years, according to the report. Pro-abortion legislators in the state Senate previously gave similar arguments against the bill.
“You are the company you keep and by Mississippi reimbursing Planned Parenthood through Medicaid, we are keeping that company,” state Sen. Brice Wiggins said in response.
Mississippi Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves previously issued a statement in support of the bill, WTOK 11 reports.
“The taxpayers of the state of Mississippi do not want and should not be forced to spend money on Planned Parenthood,” Reeves said. “This legislation ensures taxpayers’ dollars are funding services that support women’s health through family planning needs, reducing the teen pregnancy rate and lowering the infant mortality rate.”
“I am committed to making Mississippi the safest place in America for an unborn child,” Reeves added.
The amended bill returns to the state Senate for a vote.
A handful of states have passed legislation to defund abortion businesses after the Planned Parenthood abortion company was caught in multiple states selling aborted babies and their body parts. In February, Ohio became the 10th state to take steps to end or cut Planned Parenthood funding. Others also are in the process of working to pass similar legislation.