Federal Judge Clears Way for $1.8 Billion Lawsuit Against Planned Parenthood For Alleged Fraud
U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk recently ruled that Texas can proceed with its lawsuit against Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider. The lawsuit alleges that Planned Parenthood filed millions of false Medicaid claims, improperly receiving taxpayer reimbursement for services. If the lawsuit is successful, Planned Parenthood may face a staggering $1.8 billion judgment, which includes repayments, damages, and fines.
In 2021, a Texas judge allowed the state to defund Planned Parenthood and remove it from the state’s Medicaid program. Medicaid is a significant source of taxpayer funding for Planned Parenthood. The decision to defund Planned Parenthood came after the abortion provider was implicated in the sale of aborted baby body parts.
Now, Texas is seeking to recover taxpayer funds that it believes Planned Parenthood wrongfully received during the defunding period. The state is not only requesting the $17 million it claims the abortion provider owes but also seeks damages, fees, and fines that could add up to $1 billion. The lawsuit is filed under the federal False Claims Act, which allows for fines on every improper payment.
The lawsuit against Planned Parenthood is unique in its attempt to recover taxpayer funds from the country’s largest abortion provider. Judge Kacsmaryk’s ruling is an important step in this legal battle. The state argues that Planned Parenthood should not have received taxpayer dollars while the lawsuit to defund it was pending in court. Texas claims it was “unthinkable that Planned Parenthood would continue to take advantage of funding knowing they were not entitled to keep it.” Judge Kacsmaryk, a Trump appointee based in Amarillo, previously issued a ruling to halt the use of the mifepristone abortion pill due to its harmful effects on women.
Planned Parenthood, however, sees the case differently. Alexis McGill Johnson, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, views it as an attempt to shut down their health centers, dismissing it as “baseless.”
Planned Parenthood was initially defunded in Texas after it was found to have violated federal regulations by altering abortion procedures to harvest fetal body parts, a practice that outraged many. Texas Right to Life noted that Medicaid providers in Texas must adhere to state and federal laws, and the Texas Office of the Inspector General determined that Planned Parenthood had violated these regulations, leading to the termination of their provider contract.
Jennifer Allmon, the executive director of the Texas Catholic Conference of Bishops, pointed out that there are numerous healthcare providers throughout Texas who are willing to serve underprivileged women with healthcare services without involving abortion. She cited the Texas Pregnancy Care Network as a resource for finding such providers.
This legal battle in Texas is significant, as it may set a precedent for recovering taxpayer funds from abortion providers who have allegedly violated laws and regulations. The outcome of this case could have far-reaching implications for Planned Parenthood.