In a request filed late Friday in Austin, Planned Parenthood has asked a federal judge in Texas to halt the plan to cut its funding from the state’s Medicaid program.
The AP reports that the request is a part of a larger lawsuit filed last year, which was in response to controversial and highly-edited videos released by anti-abortion organization Center for Medical Progress that purportedly showed Planned Parenthood officials selling fetal tissue. The decision to officially cut Planned Parenthood out of the state’s Medicaid program came on December 20th, leaving the organization 15 days to appeal the decision. It seems that they are doing so, just under the wire.
Planned Parenthood’s request is not without precedent; judges in Arkansas, Alabama, Kansas and Mississippi have stopped similar situations from taking place as a result of the videos and their ensuing controversy. In the request for injunction, Planned Parenthood wrote, “Courts have unanimously prevented these terminations and agreed that preventing Medicaid enrollees from obtaining care from the qualified provider of their choice violates federal law.”
Planned Parenthood is set to be cut off as soon as January 21, pending any decision from the judge. A hearing for the case had been previously set for January 17. Ideally the judge will look to precedent and grant the request, allowing thousands of women who depend on Planned Parenthood for essential services like cancer screenings and birth control to continue to do so.