This needs to end up at the U.S. Supreme Court. Preferably soon

Federal court rules Ohio has no right not to fund Planned Parenthood

By —— Bio and Archives--April 18, 2018

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Federal court rules Ohio has no right not to fund Planned Parenthood
Apparently Planned Parenthood has rights no one else has, among them the right to receive state funding even if the state legislature doesn’t want to provide any such funding.

Try to follow the constitutional logic if you can:

  1. Everyone has the right to free speech.
  2. Abortion = speech.
  3. Denying you money because you perform abortions is therefore a denial of your free speech.

You’d think it would be hard to find a federal judge who wouldn’t laugh this argument out of court.  No one has an inherent right to receive government funding. That depends on the decision of elected legislators to allocate. Or it does with everyone other than Planned Parenthood, which now, according to the federal judiciary, must be funded by state funds in Ohio regardless of whether the legislature thinks that is necessary or wise:

Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio and Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region had sued the state, saying the law violated their constitutional rights by denying them the funds “in retaliation for” providing abortions.

Planned Parenthood said Ohio’s law would not force any of its 28 health centers in the state to close but the legislation would deprive thousands of patients of access to services such as HIV tests and breast and cervical cancer screenings.

The group’s attorneys argued the law was unconstitutional because it required, as a condition of receiving government funds, that recipients abandon their constitutionally protected rights to free speech and to provide abortion services.

Wednesday’s decision said the money at issue had nothing to do with abortion, while noting that state and federal law have prohibited the use of government funds to pay for abortions for decades.


The state wrongly concluded “that because Ohio has the right to refuse to fund abortion, it necessarily has the right to refuse to provide any funds to abortion providers, regardless of how the funds are to be used,” said Judge Helene White, writing for the majority three-judge ruling.

The state’s attorneys had argued that Planned Parenthood was trying to override state policy choices and that no entity has a constitutional right to receive public money.

That’s exactly the point, and it’s astonishing that even the most liberal judge doesn’t see it. When Judge White argues that Ohio lacks “the right to refuse to provide any funds to abortion providers,” that implies that states have no say in who does or doesn’t get state funding. How exactly is any private party in a position to tell an unwilling state legislature “you must fund us,” and then find a court to agree with it when the legislature says no.

If the representatives of the people don’t get to decided how to spend the people’s money, and on what/whom, then how exactly can it be said that we have representative government. Planned Parenthood has no right to funding simply because no one does. The only reason the Ohio legislature has to give for not funding Planned Parenthood is: “We don’t want to.” End of story.

This needs to end up at the U.S. Supreme Court. Preferably soon.


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Dan Calabrese -- Bio and Archives | Comments

Dan Calabrese’s column is distributed by HermanCain.com, which can be found at HermanCain

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