Utah Health Dept. warned against defunding Planned Parenthood, court docs claim

Posted at 6:37 PM, Oct 14, 2015

SALT LAKE CITY — New documents filed in federal court claim that executives with the Utah Department of Health warned Governor Gary Herbert against defunding Planned Parenthood.

The documents, filed by lawyers for Planned Parenthood of Utah ahead of a hearing Thursday on whether to continue a temporary restraining order, claim deputy director Dr. Robert Rolfs said it would have consequences for people receiving health care treatment and future funding for the state.

From the filing:

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The court filing also claims Dr. Rolfs told the governor’s office “there are areas of service where we can’t avoid taking services away from women who would have been helped” by PPAU.”

Governor Gary Herbert ordered the state to stop facilitating federal funding from going to Planned Parenthood of Utah after videos surfaced nationally that purported to show Planned Parenthood executives discussing what to do with fetal tissue. Planned Parenthood of Utah has accused the governor of singling them out, even though they maintain they had no involvement in the national controversy.

The Utah Attorney General’s Office has argued the state is acting within its authority. Two weeks ago, a federal judge granted Planned Parenthood’s request for a restraining order, blocking the governor from cutting their funding. A hearing is scheduled Thursday to determine if that should be made permanent.

Read the court filing here: