Abortion Policies Under Scrutiny In A Number Of States

Wisconsin's governor signed a budget that cuts some funds to health clinics, including Planned Parenthood, but in Indiana, a federal judge ruled against the state's plans to end funding for the group. Those developments came as abortion policies are coming under scrutiny in a number of states.

National Journal: Wisconsin Cuts Funds To Planned Parenthood
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker signed a budget Sunday that cuts education and health clinics — including Planned Parenthood clinics — to plug a $3 billion shortfall without raising taxes, AP reported. The two-year, $66 billion budget passed in the state legislature without a single Democratic vote. The Planned Parenthood Federation of America denounced the budget, which eliminated state and federal funding for the organization's clinics (Fox, 6/26).

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Walker Signs Budget Bill, Vetoes Just 50 Items
The governor also issued a veto that would give his administration more say over the limits it would put in place for a family planning program that provides free birth control to those as young as 15. Those limits could include new restrictions on the ages and incomes of those who use the program, but the federal government would have to sign off on the changes first. ... Walker also is keeping in place a budget provision that would bar the University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority from providing abortions, despite claims by some that it could put at risk the university's accreditation for its obstetrics and gynecology program. Walker said he did not believe the university would lose that accreditation (Marley and Stein, 6/26).

The New York Times: Several States Forbid Abortion After 20 Weeks
On the theory that fetuses can feel pain after 20 weeks (an idea disputed by mainstream medicine), several states have banned abortions later than this (Eckholm, 6/26).

Dallas Morning News: Texas Health Bill To Advance After Compromise On Abortion Rules
Anti-abortion activists and House Republicans said Friday that they have settled internal disputes that threatened to scuttle a comprehensive health care savings bill (Garrett, 6/24).

The New York Times: New Law In Kansas Seen As A Threat To Abortions
One in a series of abortion limits approved in Kansas since Republicans took full control of the state government this year — a new license law — is raising uncertainty about the future of all abortion providers in the state. Opponents of abortion say that the licenses — which newly dictate requirements for the size of rooms at abortion clinics, the stocking of emergency equipment, medications and blood supplies, and ties to nearby hospitals — will ensure at least a modicum of safety standards. ... But abortion rights supporters, here and nationally, say the rules, which take effect next week, are onerous, have been rushed into place too rapidly and are actually aimed at ending abortion services (Sulzberger and Davey, 6/24).

The New York Times: Indiana Law To Cut Planned Parenthood Funding Is Blocked
A federal judge ruled Friday that the State of Indiana could not cut off money for Planned Parenthood clinics providing health care to low-income women on Medicaid (Pear, 6/24).

Indianapolis Star: Judge Says Defunding Law Breaks Medicaid Rules
The injunction only places a temporary hold on enforcement of the parts of the law. ... But Pratt's ruling is an ominous sign for the state's prospects in the larger court case (Gillers, 6/25). 

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