Trending
MOST READ
Lt. Governor Race: the \'Luchadora\' vs. the Tea Party radio host

Lt. Governor Race: the 'Luchadora' vs. the Tea Party radio host

News: A few Saturdays ago, I spent several hours hanging around a Texas Realtors Association conference in San Antonio, trying to catch state Sen. Dan Patrick... By Alexa Garcia-Ditta 9/17/2014
The Permanent Gangsta Status of Mobb Deep’s Prodigy

The Permanent Gangsta Status of Mobb Deep’s Prodigy

Music: Prodigy, better known to ’90s rap aficionados as the prodigious half of Queensbridge duo Mobb Deep, has made a successful career operating on... By James Courtney 9/17/2014
Best Lounge

Best Lounge

Best of SA 2013: 4/24/2013
Beaches Be Trippin\': Five Texas Coast Spots Worth the Drive

Beaches Be Trippin': Five Texas Coast Spots Worth the Drive

Arts & Culture: Let’s face it, most of us Lone Stars view the Texas coast as a poor man’s Waikiki. Hell, maybe just a poor man’s Panama Beach — only to be used... By Callie Enlow 7/10/2013
Everything but the Bowie in \'David Bowie Is\'

Everything but the Bowie in 'David Bowie Is'

Screens: People love David Bowie more than you are capable of loving your family. But that’s OK—people love Bowie to an extent that your family would quite frankly... By Jeremy Martin 9/17/2014
Calendar

Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.

Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

Follow us on Instagram @sacurrent

Print Email

The QueQue

The QueQue: 2012 rains mean SAWS sewer main breaks, Rick Perry as defender of women's health care?, Fracking and the Clean Air Act

Photo: , License: N/A



Related stories


With the war on women raging, Gov. Rick Perry has tried earnestly over the past two weeks to pin the pending demise of the state's widely successful Women's Health Program on the feds. Now set to phase out over the course of the next three months, the shuttering of the program cuts off thousands of low-income and uninsured Texas women from basic health care and family planning services.

A months-long standoff between the feds and the state ended last week as the federal Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services officially announced they'd end the Medicaid-waiver program, which currently draws $9 in federal funds for every $1 the state chips in.

Since December the feds have insisted Texas' new rule change barring Planned Parenthood's family planning clinics and other "affiliates" of abortion providers from the program violates longstanding federal law allowing Medicaid patients to choose the health care provider of their choice. "Medicaid law is very clear; a state may not restrict patients' choice of providers of services like mammograms and other cancer screenings if those providers are qualified to deliver care covered by Medicaid," said CMS spokesman Alper Ozinal in an email last week. "Patients, not state government officials, should be able to choose the doctors and other health care providers that are best for them and their families. In 2005, Texas requested this same authority to restrict patients' choices, and the Bush Administration did not grant it to them either."

The WHP, which provides contraception and general reproductive health care services like cervical and breast cancer screenings, covered about 180,000 uninsured Texas women in 2010, according to state numbers. And by last count, Planned Parenthood served nearly half of all WHP clients.

Perry has called the spat a prime example of federal overreach. With the criticism piling up, the governor announced this month he'd scrounge up enough state cash to keep the program alive once the federal money — roughly $30 million each annually — drops out. He has yet to say where that money will come from. CMS this week said it will start a gradual phase-out of the program over the next three months. Perry responded with a flurry of press statements, calling CMS' decision "the height of political posturing," and charging the administration of putting "the interests of abortion providers and their affiliates, like Planned Parenthood, over the well-being of more than 100,000 low-income Texas women."

This is the same Perry that signed off on the Lege's gutting of Texas family planning budget last year.

Perry says he'll "continue to fight this egregious overreach and defend life, our state's laws and the Tenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution." He and others firmly in the GOP camp have cried states' rights, saying Texas has every right to kick Planned Parenthood out of the program. And what would be a Texas-fed fight without a lawsuit? The state filed Friday, saying the administration's actions are unconstitutional and seeks to "commandeer and coerce the states' lawmaking process into awarding taxpayer subsidies to elective abortion providers." Also in the lawsuit? AG Greg Abbott asked the feds to please continue funding for the program.

Fracking and the Clean Air Act

We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus