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Last updated on Friday, June 3, 2011
(UNDATED) - Indiana’s law banning state funding for Planned Parenthood remains set for a court hearing on Monday but the roles of the two sides have shifted.
Planned Parenthood of Indiana had sued to block the law, but the Department of Health and Human Services has taken care of that issue, at least for now, with a letter denying state officials the required permission to alter Medicaid rules.
HHS says federal regulations specifically prohibit picking and choosing among eligible recipients.
Indiana has until the end of next month to decide whether to appeal.
A Family and Social Services Administration Spokesman says the agency hasn't decided what to do.
Indiana's eight Republicans in Congress had written HHS last week to urge approval of the defunding law.
Senator Dan Coats says the state should not only ask the agency to reconsider, but take it to court.
He contends the government is trampling on states' rights under the 10th amendment, which guarantees states any powers not reserved to the federal government.
PPIN President Betty Cockrum responds the government gives Indiana $4-billion dollars to administer Medicaid, and has the right to make the rules on how that money is spent.
Planned Parenthood still wants a judge to throw out another provision of the law requiring doctors to tell abortion patients that life begins at conception, and that the fetus can feel pain at about five months.
Governor Daniels declined comment through a spokeswoman.
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