The Obama administration is once again threatening officials – this time in all 50 states – that cutting off Planned Parenthood’s Medicaid funding could be a violation of federal law.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is sending a letter to all state Medicaid offices to warn that terminating specific providers – such as Planned Parenthood – can be done only if those providers fail to cover medical services or cannot bill for those services, reports the Washington Post.
Marissa Padilla, a spokeswoman for the federal Health and Human Services department, said:
CMS is sending a letter to all states to ensure they have a clear understanding of their obligation to follow longstanding Medicaid law guaranteeing that beneficiaries have the right to receive covered services, including family planning services, from any qualified and willing provider of their choice.
Ten states have eliminated Planned Parenthood’s Medicaid funding since an undercover video series exposed the abortion business’ apparent practices of selling the body parts of babies it aborts and altering the position of babies during abortion in order to harvest the most intact organs.
“These political attacks on our patients have gone from a simmer to full rolling boil,” said president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Cecile Richards. “What they couldn’t do in Congress, they’re now trying to do state by state, and jeopardizing care for more than half a million people.”
“I encourage every state legislature and every governor to stand up and lead on Planned Parenthood,” GOP presidential contender Ted Cruz told Breitbart News last year during an interview. “Unfortunately, Republican leadership in Washington is unwilling to lead and, indeed, it’s Republican leadership who’s joined with Barack Obama in leading the fight to preserve taxpayer funding for Planned Parenthood.”
Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, Louisiana, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas and Wisconsin have all redirected Medicaid funding from Planned Parenthood to other federally qualified healthcare centers that provide more comprehensive services and also do not perform abortions.
In its 2014-2015 fiscal year, Planned Parenthood reports it performed 323,999 abortions and was the recipient of $553.7 million in taxpayer funding.
Consistent with its narrative that women need government protection in order to survive, Planned Parenthood has consistently sought protection from the Obama administration against states that have asserted their rights.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services made it clear that people have the right to choose where they get care. https://t.co/XE9dCV5PVT
— Planned Parenthood Action (@PPact) April 19, 2016
“[U]nder President Obama, even with all of the difficulties of the Affordable Care Act, 55 million women now have access to no-cost birth control in their insurance plans,” Richards said in an interview Tuesday at Fusion. “I can tell you that’s a radical change from even five years ago… So I think that it’s important that we absolutely continue to fight as they come, but also push forward and acknowledge the progress when we make it. Because I think there are things that are happening that actually give me enormous hope.”
In August of last year, CMS stepped in to warn states then considering defunding the abortion giant that they may be in violation of federal law.
However, guidance from HHS also states that providers may be excluded from Medicaid funding if their engagement in certain criminal acts is proven, a provision many believe is the case with allegations that Planned Parenthood made a profit on its sales of body parts of aborted babies to biomedical procurement companies.
A hearing on Wednesday of a special House panel investigating fetal tissue practices has revealed that the abortion business has likely illegally profited from the sale of aborted baby body parts.
In 2013, Obama became the first president to ever address Planned Parenthood, promising to stand with the abortion business against efforts to “turn back the clock to policies more suited to the 1950s than the 21st century.”
“Thank you. God bless you,” the president said to Planned Parenthood and its supporters at a gala event celebrating the organization’s 100th anniversary.