Texas AG Ken Paxton Sues Planned Parenthood to Recover $10M in Medicaid Funds

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton speaks outside the U.S. Supreme Court on November 01, 2021 in Washington, DC. On Monday, the Supreme Court heard arguments in a challenge to the controversial Texas abortion law which bans abortions after 6 weeks. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a lawsuit Thursday against Planned Parenthood Federation of America and several of its Texas affiliates in an attempt to recover $10 million in funds the abortion business received through the state’s Medicaid program after it was defunded.

“Specifically, Planned Parenthood received reimbursement from Texas Medicaid to which it was not entitled,” the lawsuit states. “Planned Parenthood knowingly and improperly avoided its obligation to repay money owed to the Texas Medicaid program.”

Paxton said in a statement:

It is unthinkable that Planned Parenthood would continue to take advantage of funding knowing they were not entitled to keep it. I will not allow them to benefit from this abhorrent conduct after they were caught violating medical standards and lying to law enforcement.

As a press statement from Paxton’s office noted, and Breitbart News reported, the state’s Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General eliminated Planned Parenthood from its Medicaid program in 2016. The move was made in the aftermath of the release of undercover videos from the Center for American Progress that exposed potentially illegal activities involving the harvesting and transfer of the body parts of babies aborted in Planned Parenthood clinics.

Planned Parenthood challenged the elimination of its Medicaid funds in the courts, but ultimately lost its case when the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit overruled a lower court’s decision.

“[B]y February 1, 2017, Planned Parenthood was not entitled to be reimbursed from Texas Medicaid,” the statement from Paxton’s office explained. “The lawsuit seeks disgorgement of all program monies paid to Planned Parenthood for services delivered after that date, approximately $10 million – plus trebling of that amount and additional civil penalties for each day that Planned Parenthood failed to repay.”

Planned Parenthood General Counsel Kumiki Gibson said in a statement to Courthouse News that referred to the Texas Heartbeat Act, which bans abortions once a fetal heartbeat is detected:

Attorney General Ken Paxton, Governor Greg Abbott, and their allies continue to do everything in their power to undermine the health care of Texans, who have suffered under the most restrictive abortion law in the nation for more than four months now. Planned Parenthood will continue to fight back against all of these false accusations and political attacks and will continue serving patients in Texas – no matter what.

Texas Alliance for Life reacted to the lawsuit on Twitter by thanking Paxton.

“Planned Parenthood is the nation’s largest abortion provider, and they don’t deserve any of our tax dollars,” the pro-life group tweeted.

The case is United States of America v. Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc, No. 2-21-CV-022-Z in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas Amarillo Division.


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