Federal Court Reinstates Law Allowing Florida to Defund Planned Parenthood

Anti-abortion activists rally on the steps of the Texas Capitol to condemn the use in medi
AP Photo/Eric Gay

Florida will be allowed to defund Planned Parenthood on June 1, after a federal judge ended a permanent injunction on Tuesday blocking part of a 2016 law.

U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle, of the United States District Court Northern District of Florida, reversed the permanent injunction on part of House Bill 1411, which prohibits state and local dollars from going to institutions that provide abortions. Hinkle stated in his order that the “essential basis of the ruling [in 2016] was the right to an abortion under Roe v. Wade.” But with Roe overturned in the Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision last summer, the previous order no longer had legal standing.

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody filed a motion in February to reinstate Florida’s ability to defund the abortion giant. Moody argued that the Dobbs ruling “makes clear that there is no constitutional right to abortion and that Supreme Court cases holding otherwise were ‘egregiously wrong from the start.’”

“The State may thus constitutionally prohibit abortion within its borders,” the motion reads.

Moody announced the court victory on Tuesday.

“[I’m] proud to secure a victory in our case about whether Floridians should be forced to fund Planned Parenthood. The court reinstated what the legislature passed in 2016—a ban on state funds supporting clinics that provide abortions,” she wrote.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) issued a statement in support of Moody’s efforts when she filed the motion.

“The Office of Governor Ron DeSantis is fully behind this action from the Attorney General and we support this move to fully defund Planned Parenthood from any taxpayer support,” DeSantis’s office said.

Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks to pro-life supporters before signing Florida’s 15-week abortion ban into law at Nacion de Fe church in Kissimmee. (Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

According to the Tampa Bay Times, Planned Parenthood estimated in its 2016 lawsuit that it would lose $500,000 annually. Planned Parenthood told WTSP News 10 Tampa Bay at the time that the state is “jeopardizing Floridians’ health.”

“Thousands of Floridians with low incomes turn to Planned Parenthood health centers for essential preventive care like STI testing and treatment, cancer screening and birth control,” Planned Parenthood said in a statement. “Now, the state is jeopardizing Floridians’ health by blocking Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida from receiving funding for these services.”

But according to Life News, the law “will not cut taxpayer funding for healthcare” and will instead “redirect that money to clinics that offer real medical care and not elective abortions that kill unborn babies.”

The case is Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida v. Ladapo, No. 4:16-cv-321 in the U.S. District Court North District of Florida. 


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