Planned Parenthood in North Carolina will continue providing abortions on demand--for now. A state judge has blocked part of the state budget that would have restricted funding to the group's abortion-on-demand procedures. The state has yet to decide if it will appeal the ruling.
RALEIGH, NC (Catholic Online) - The recently passed North Carolina state budget restricted abortion funding for Planned Parenthood by allowing taxpayer money to only be used to fund abortions in cases of rape, incest, or when the life of the mother was in danger. This was hailed as significant progress in the fight to ensure protections for the unborn. However, Planned Parenthood sued, claiming the provisions was adopted to penalize the organization.
Critics of the lawsuit explained that Planned Parenthood would still be able to obtain funding from the federal government for abortions, but it would no longer be able to use taxpayer money to fund abortions on demand. This is an important change in policy as North Carolina listens to its first Republican legislature in over a century.
The judge, James Beaty Jr., spared Planned Parenthood's funding, and operations, for at least a short time to come. Planned Parenthood explained to Beaty, that a loss of funding would result in the closure of at least one clinic, and the elimination of education programs for teens as well and low-cost contraceptives--for teens. Paige Johnson, vice president of public affairs for Planned Parenthood in North Carolina said, "We feel this is a tremendous win for women in North Carolina, particularly for those who are poor or uninsured."
It is undecided if the state will appeal this decision. Previous appeals in other states which have attempted similar efforts to protect life have been defeated by the Federal courts. If the North Carolina officials feel they cannot win at the Federal level, they may not bother to appeal.
What is a win for secularists and abortion providers, is undoubtedly a loss for thousands of unborn. The days to come will tell if the fight for life in North Carolina will continue or if a single judge has put an end to the efforts of the legislature, for now