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Obama cuts off federal funds from Texas women's health program -- hey liberals, who's really waging a "war on women" now???

KoAm 2012/03/10 11:40:34
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Obama administration to end funding for Texas health program for low-income women; at odds with state law on abortion



The federal government will stop funding a Texas health
program that serves 130,000 low-income women
because of a state law that
bars abortion-affiliated clinics from getting public money, a top U.S.
health official said Friday.



The federal money, which covers 90 percent of the state's $40 million
program, will be phased out between May and September because the law
violates federal regulations requiring that women have a choice in
medical care, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said
during a trip to Houston.

That means the Women's Health Program will
join a long list of programs nationwide on the chopping block because of
their affiliations with Planned Parenthood
or other groups that offer
abortions.



The announcement came a day after Texas Gov. Rick Perry pledged to
find state money to keep the program afloat, though details remain
scarce about where the money would come from. Texas suffered massive
spending cuts last year due to a $15 billion deficit, though a state
health services official said Friday that Texas would prefer to increase
its deficit than completely eliminate the program.



Perry blasted Sebelius' announcement, insisting Medicaid rules give
states the right to determine which clinics are qualified to provide
women's health care.



"The fact that the Obama administration would announce its decision
to deny care for more than 100,000 low-income women during a press event
before giving official notice to the state is a clear demonstration of
the political motivation behind this decision,"
he said in a written
statement, adding that Texas officials are still waiting for official
word on the decision.



As is the case with other programs now in the national spotlight, the
Women's Health Program provides cancer screenings, family planning and
other women's health services. About 44 percent of women in the Texas
program go to Planned Parenthood clinics, although none that accept
funding from the program may perform abortions, and no federal funds are
used to terminate pregnancies.



The problem in Texas is being caused by lawmakers' desire to prevent
state funds from going to Planned Parenthood. The state is implementing a
law that bars public funds from going to any programs, organizations or
groups that are affiliated with abortions, even if they don't perform
them.



After touring a hospital in Houston, Sebelius said the state law
violates federal Medicaid regulations that require women be allowed to
choose where they go for health care. Federal funds flowed to Texas
under a waiver, but "we plan to let Texas know that that waiver will not
be extended," Sebelius said.



The money will be phased out so women have time to find alternative care, she said.



The state was warned that implementing the law would jeopardize
federal funding, and Texas chose not to immediately enforce it when it
was passed, Sebelius added.



"They knew ... they are not allowed to deny women the right to
choose," Sebelius said. "Women would be losing their doctor, their
medical home, their choice."



Stephanie Goodman, spokeswoman for the Texas Department of Health and
Human Services, said money to pay for the program would be diverted
from others that are under budget — though she didn't offer specifics.
If that doesn't cover the costs, she said, the state would increase its
deficit to pay for the services because officials believe that if
low-income women don't have access to birth control, the birth rate
would rise and cost the state another $57 million in maternity bills.



Last year, Texas lawmakers slashed state funding for women's health
and family planning programs by $73.6 million — cutting services to
160,000 women. They also took $10 million from a separate family
planning budget line and shifted those responsibilities to organizations
that administer Medicaid in Texas.



Now, with the expected cut in federal funds, "there's a huge gap in family planning" in Texas, Sebelius said.



State Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee, D-Houston, said she and members of
Congress are negotiating with Sebelius and federal officials to find a
way to ensure that the funds don't stop flowing.



And while Sebelius said her department has been trying to work with
the state to provide a solution, she didn't indicate that would happen
before March 14, when the state plans to begin enforcing the law.



"We have been working with Texas. We're eager to work with Texas to
find a solution," Sebelius said. "But if Texas chooses to go down a road
that violates the law, we really have no choice."

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Top Opinion

  • KoAm 2012/03/10 11:44:15
    To liberals like Obama, women's health isn't their chief concern. Abortion is.
    KoAm
    +3
    >>>"They knew ... they are not allowed to deny women the right to
    choose," Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said. "Women would be losing their doctor, their medical home, their choice."<<<


    Oh, but cutting off federal funds DOESN'T cause women to be losing their doctor or medical home, Kathy???

    Great. So instead of offering women medical choices -- but just not at places that do abortions -- let's cut off the funding so that the women's "medical homes" have to close their doors.

    Then Sebelius has the GALL to blame the Obama regime's action here on Texas, not on themselves.

    These people sicken me.

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  • Ray Ellen 2012/04/04 14:42:49
    I'm a liberal who's about to make a lame excuse for this crap.
    Ray Ellen
    WOMEN-MINORITIES-GAY-STRAIGHT:
    USE your VOICE or LOSE your VOICE so your (children)DAUGHTER'S have a VOICE and FREEDOM of CHOICE!

    TEXAS IT'S YOUR FAULT!
    I am a LIBERAL and I'm not to make a lame excuse for that crap! How is it President Obama's fault? The citizen's of Texas VOTED in a REPUBLICAN-RICH-WHITE-MAN knowing his stance on ISSUE'S concerning the POOR-WOMEN and ELDERLY. Maybe, next time you'll be more careful on who you VOTE for next election.

    It would help if DEMOCRAT'S would EDUCATE the PUBLIC more about POLITIC'S using REAL people to get the WORD out. People who have lived and experienced the ISSUE'S at hand and along with the POLITICIAN explain what the changes will be if they VOTE a certain way.

    A lot of VOTER'S don't realize how very IMPORTANT it is to not only VOTE in the PRESIDENTIAL election's but, almost MORE important to VOTE in the election of the State Governor and Senator's--Congressman.

    REMEMBER you got what you VOTED for! DISCRIMINATION!!!
    Each State has the POWER to TWEEK the LAW this need's to be EXPLAINED and use EXAMPLE'S like TEXAS and other SOUTHERN RED State's ran by REPUBLICAN-WHITE-RICH-MEN who VOTE AGAINST WOMEN'S ISSUE'S--MINORITIES-POOR-
    ELDERLY and the DISABLED.
  • Candy 2012/03/14 04:17:53
  • Rore73 2012/03/11 20:24:52
    To liberals like Obama, women's health isn't their chief concern. Abortion is.
    Rore73
    Thanks for pointing it out Jen!
  • Tony 2012/03/10 23:34:39
    To liberals like Obama, women's health isn't their chief concern. Abortion is.
    Tony
    More proof that the only difference between republicans and democrats is the damned mascot!
  • iamthemob ~ the 444th Guru ~ 2012/03/10 20:40:16
    I'm a liberal who's about to make a lame excuse for this crap.
    iamthemob ~ the 444th Guru ~
    +1
    Federal regulations are what's at issue. The President must execute such regulations as that the primary function of the branch. They were in place at the time the state law passed, and therefore the lawmakers for the state were aware that the federal funding would be terminated if the law were to pass.

    The President should not be expected to use discretion in enforcement of established law, even where enforcement has negative consequences.

    It is dishonest, therefore, to say this is his doing rather than the Texas legislature's. They acted with full knowledge of the loss of funds. To blame Obama for acts that are non-discretionary based on the choice of another is a profound error.
  • TheTruth1313 2012/03/10 20:25:51
    To liberals like Obama, women's health isn't their chief concern. Abortion is.
    TheTruth1313
    +1
    The only things Obama cares about is furthering his socialist agenda, lining his pockets with the $$ that he has been bought and paid for with and serving his big money masters.
  • Demonic Rat Hunter 2012/03/10 19:39:58
    To liberals like Obama, women's health isn't their chief concern. Abortion is.
    Demonic Rat Hunter
    Although like everything obama and the Libs do it's about Control Complete and Utter Control of your life and what you think and say.
  • Rebel Yell 2012/03/10 17:11:25
    Criticizing Obama again, eh, Jen? You racist!
    Rebel Yell
    No, I don't think Jen is a racist. However, Gov. Perry bragged several weeks ago that he shut down 12 abortion centers in Texas. Problem is they were not abortion centers. They were Women Health Centers with no abortion facilities. Those centers served 130,000 women. For every one dollar the state kicked in, the federal government kicked in nine. Pretty sweet deal. By closing those centers, Perry also lost federal funding for Texas Women's Health Centers. Immediately Texas Medicaid doctors weighed in, saying it would add 200 million to Texas expenditures. The Houston Chronicle and Dallas Morning News also called it another dumb Perry move. Now Perry is backing up, saying he will find the money somewhere to keep the clinics open. Not going to happen.

    You can read about this in today's Houston Chronicle, entitled " Collateral Damage".
  • mike 2012/03/10 15:55:54
    To liberals like Obama, women's health isn't their chief concern. Abortion is.
    mike
    Another fine example of o-bamboozlerism!
  • exetertraining 2012/03/10 15:54:20
    To liberals like Obama, women's health isn't their chief concern. Abortion is.
    exetertraining
    This video at The Political Commentator provides the clear difference between the way that President Obama treats the humiliation and degradation of Democrat women versus the way he reacts to the same treatment of Republican women!

    Watch the video here: http://bit.ly/zvPGap Obama and women
  • ed 2012/03/10 13:35:23
    To liberals like Obama, women's health isn't their chief concern. Abortion is.
    ed
    +1
    Now Jen we can't be criticizing obama because remember he did inherit this mess ,and he really loves women.
  • Snowball ed 2012/03/10 23:18:18
    Snowball
    omg, what a sad video about Obama in Illinios and babies that survive late term abortions. Awful.
  • ken 2012/03/10 13:27:08
    To liberals like Obama, women's health isn't their chief concern. Abortion is.
    ken
    +2
    This is in line with the Obama way. Threats, bribery and intimidation is the order of the day.
  • iamthem... ken 2012/03/10 20:50:57
    iamthemob ~ the 444th Guru ~
    The state legislators were aware of the regulations. The regulations forbid federal funding to any institution acting in the manner that this law requires Texas health programs to now act. The regulations have been in place for decades now, and upheld in the Supreme Court in 1991.
  • 2012 Obama 2012/03/10 13:09:21
    I'm a liberal who's about to make a lame excuse for this crap.
    2012 Obama
    +1
    This article is total crap!

    The Feds do not give funding to organizations that discriminate and Texas tried to take Fed money for women's health care clinics but would only give it to clinics that did not provide abortion and contraception services.

    Texas got busted and their law will be repealed or they will lose Fed funding.
  • The_Red... 2012 Obama 2012/03/10 18:28:52
  • 2012 Obama The_Red... 2012/03/10 18:33:13 (edited)
    2012 Obama
    Now let me show you the door PAB!
  • iamthem... The_Red... 2012/03/10 20:53:18
    iamthemob ~ the 444th Guru ~
    Let me ask you this: does the Executive branch have discretion in deciding whether it has to actually follow through with executing federal laws and regulations? In this case there was a regulation that required no federal funds be disbursed if the Texas law passed...a very old regulation mind you. Could Obama used discretion and decide to do it anyway?
  • The_Red... iamthem... 2012/03/28 01:19:00
    The_Red-fox
    what does that have to do with this?
  • iamthem... The_Red... 2012/04/07 20:10:54
    iamthemob ~ the 444th Guru ~
    It has to do with who is responsible in the end for the loss of funds. If the executive has a constitutional duty to cut off the funds in this case, then the responsibility rests with the state passing the law requiring that cut off, no?
  • JustTheFacts 2012/03/10 12:08:52 (edited)
    To liberals like Obama, women's health isn't their chief concern. Abortion is.
    JustTheFacts
    +1
    Crony government and hypocrisy all in the same blow. 0bama and his minions are all about change through diversion of issues instead of honest policy.
  • iamthem... JustThe... 2012/03/10 20:54:00
    iamthemob ~ the 444th Guru ~
    But how is this Obama's choice, when the regulation requires that he act as he does?
  • KoAm 2012/03/10 11:44:15
    To liberals like Obama, women's health isn't their chief concern. Abortion is.
    KoAm
    +3
    >>>"They knew ... they are not allowed to deny women the right to
    choose," Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said. "Women would be losing their doctor, their medical home, their choice."<<<


    Oh, but cutting off federal funds DOESN'T cause women to be losing their doctor or medical home, Kathy???

    Great. So instead of offering women medical choices -- but just not at places that do abortions -- let's cut off the funding so that the women's "medical homes" have to close their doors.

    Then Sebelius has the GALL to blame the Obama regime's action here on Texas, not on themselves.

    These people sicken me.
  • iamthem... KoAm 2012/03/10 20:57:00
    iamthemob ~ the 444th Guru ~
    +1
    The point of the quote is that the state government knew that regulations would require that federal funds be cut off.

    It is the passage of the law that caused the end of the funds. Since Obama has to follow the regulations, whether or not the funds were available wasn't up to him.

    If you know that speeding will result in a fine, and you speed and are fined, do you blame the officer for the money you lost?

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