We could have done more if President Obama hadn’t blocked Texas from receiving Federal Women’s health or Family planning funds. Texas taxpayers paid into that Federal fund, but were denied its return to us. Texas did our best to fill in the gaps this lost funding created, allocating $32M of our State tax funds to Family Planning and Women’s Health programs in 2013-14.
In 2015, when the budget improved, we increased State spending for Women’s health and Family Planning beyond historic amounts. In 2019, nearly $400M was allocated, including raising the cut off for eligibility to 200% of the poverty level. $15M+ was set aside to improve post-partum care.
Nevermind that science affirms that the life of each human begins at fertilization. Or that “reproduction” has obviously occurred before any woman has an abortion, ending the life of that other body, her child. (Yes, one commenter tried to tell us that not only women seek abortions.)
But it’s the last paragraph that tells the truth about the author’s agenda, with a little side dressing of racism. Mr Rivard tells voters to end the ,”one-party state” – to force taxpayers to fund elective abortion for both citizens, non-citizens, and illegal aliens alike.
Edit 8/21/19 5:15 EST (France time) to fix typos. BBN
We’ve all been hearing about the supposed “War on Women” by Conservative law makers – and, by extension, voters – in Texas. Well, President Obama and Secretary of Health Kathleen Sebellius just fired another shot in the war against Texas and State’s rights.
UPDATE: In an emailed statement, Texas Department of State Health Services spokeswoman Carrie Williams says that the agency just received notice that it will lose the Title X grant and is “reviewing the information to get a sense of the full impact.” The agency hopes the transition is smooth and the provider base remains strong, she wrote.
EARLIER: The federal government has pulled from the state of Texas millions in family planning funding, granting the money instead to a coalition led by the Women’s Health and Family Planning Association of Texas, which says it can serve a greater number of women with the available funds.
For more than four decades, federal Title X funding has been dedicated to funding family planning services and covering clinics’ infrastructure costs. The funds are generally granted to providers (like Planned Parenthood) and/or to state health agencies. In Texas since 1980, the majority of the funding has been administered by the Department of State Health Services — roughly $18 million in 2012, for example; since 2009, DSHS has been the sole grantor of Title X funds.
(Edit, maybe it’s only half of that.)
Before this year, Federal tax dollars came back to Texas in two major funds: the Women’s Health Program and Family Planning, or Title X funds. Texas “matched” a certain amount and the Texas Department of Health and Human Services administered the dispersion of the money. Because the money paid for or freed up other funds for staff, marketing, and “infrastructure” or office overhead, PP was helped to keep their abortion clinics running. The overall effect was that State matching tax dollars helped PP to funnel patients, if not dollars, to their abortion clinics.
Texas was forced to make severe Budget cuts across the board in 2011, including Family Planning funds. This led to prioritizing what little money we had:
“State lawmakers cut funding for family planning services by two-thirds in the last legislative session, dropping the two-year family planning budget from $111 million to $37.9 million for the 2012-13 biennium. They also approved a tiered budget system for family planning funds, which gives funding priority to public health clinics, such as federally qualified health centers and comprehensive clinics that provide primary and preventative care over clinics that only provide family planning services.”
Governor Rick Perry is pushing back against the Obama Administration’s threat to kill our Texas Women’s Health Program due to law passed by the Legislature last June. The Governor’s office has produced 4 new videos (one of which includes me) explaining that the State is prepared to ensure that women are able to access continuing comprehensive care under these programs.
If you only have time for one, watch Carol Everett’s video in which she relates that the Commissioner of Health and Human Services has identified 2500 doctors willing to participate with the Well Woman Program and Texas’ Family Planning, even in rural areas where there has never been a Planned Parenthood clinic. There are also videos from former Waco PP Executive Director Abby Johnson, Texas Alliance for Life’s Executive Director Joe Pojman, Ph.D., and me.
The videos can be viewed at the Governor’s YouTube page and via the Office of the Governor website. They are the beginning of a series of announcements and news releases in hopes of convincing the Obama Administration and Secretary Sebelius to preserve these programs. Time is short as the current Medicaid waiver is due to expire at the end of March.
Stop and think about it: What the media is reporting as a single crisis is really the effect of two separate events. One is the cut in funding to Family Planning that went into effect in October, along with many other cuts that were made in order to balance the State budget according to the Texas Constitution while paying for Medicaid for children and education. The second is what is happening in a few clinics that are partners with other clinics that do abortions and are panicking because they are about to lose State funds.
Where are the reports about the thousands of providers who have agreed to see patients under both these programs?
The media is also acting as though the law prohibiting anyone who performs or refers to abortions, or who is a business partner with an abortion provider is brand new or that the Governor got up one morning and changed the law. No, the House and Senate of the 82nd Texas Legislature deliberated for months on Medicaid funding, including the best way to provide care under the Family Planning Title X funds and the Medicaid funded Women’s Health Program. They continued the old prohibition on funding affiliates.
The only change is that the Attorney General has clarified that “affiliates” include organizations that are part of the same national corporation.
The media and President Obama also ignore that the legislature won’t meet until January, 2013, so there is no way to change the law that appropriates State Tax funds.
Don’t say I didn’t warn you: I was nervous as I could be and I spent too much time giving a list of my credentials. But if you’re brave, here’s my video.