Missouri Senate Republicans blast Planned Parenthood ruling
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri Senate Republicans are criticizing a federal judge's ruling in favor of a Columbia Planned Parenthood clinic after the state tried to revoke its abortion license.
U.S. District Judge Nanette Laughrey in a Wednesday ruling blocked the state from revoking the license. She said the Department of Health and Senior Services likely bowed to political pressure.
The president of Planned Parenthood President of Kansas and Mid-Missouri, Laura McQuade, said she agrees political pressure had something to do with the original revocation.
“This really has affirmed our long felt belief that Missouri Senator Kurt Schaefer really and truly abused his power to politically intimidate key members of the health care system in Missouri,” McQuade said during a phone interview.
Schaefer, R-Columbia, had investigated concerns that Planned Parenthood was selling fetal tissue in violation of state law.
“Missourians do not want their tax dollars enabling abortion, and I do not believe the federal government can force Missourians to pay for abortions,” Schaefer said.
The department's move came amid fallout from Republican lawmakers investigating abortion. After the clinic's only doctor performing abortions lost privileges with University of Missouri Health Care, the clinic stopped offering abortions and the department tried to revoke its license.
Senate President Pro Tem Ron Richard in a Thursday statement asked for an appeal and called the ruling incorrect. The attorney general's office is reviewing the ruling and has not decided yet whether to appeal.