Jan Brewer blocks anti-Planned Parenthood provision of Medicaid bill

In a rare show of restraint -- and common sense -- the Arizona governor blocked an anti-choice proposal add-on

Published April 11, 2013 5:22PM (EDT)

               (AP/Ross D. Franklin)
(AP/Ross D. Franklin)

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer blocked efforts by anti-choice activists to include an antiabortion provision in her proposal to expand the state's Medicaid program.

In a comment to critics, Brewer explained that she already signed legislation to prevent funds from the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System from being used to support Planned Parenthood-affiliated services, a move that was reversed in federal court for violating Medicaid law.

"We went down that route last year," she said in remarks about the decision. "We lost."

"It's probably time that we just move on," she added.

But her decision may lose her support among state Republicans hellbent on more abortion show pony legislative antics, similar to the measure the Arkansas state Senate passed on Wednesday.

"If this is going to further abortion, then we're not going to voluntarily do this," Republican state Rep. John Kavanagh told the Arizona Daily Star. (Remember Kavanagh, the guy who wants to ban transgender people from peeing? Glad he's not just a one-issue lawmaker.)

State attorneys are currently challenging the federal court ruling overturning last year's anti-Planned Parenthood initiative, and the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has agreed to hear the case in June.


By Katie McDonough

Katie McDonough is Salon's politics writer, focusing on gender, sexuality and reproductive justice. Follow her on Twitter @kmcdonovgh or email her at kmcdonough@salon.com.

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Abortion Anti-choice Arizona Jan Brewer Planned Parenthood Republicans