SC Governor Moves to Block State Funds for Abortion Clinic Doctors

(CN) – South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster signed an executive order on Friday that blocks stage agencies from providing state or local funds to any physician or medical practice affiliated with an abortion clinic.

The order directs state agencies to cease providing state or local funds – through grants, contracts, state-administered federal funds or any other form – to any physician or medical practices affiliated with an abortion clinic that is operating with or in the same physical location as one.

McMaster also directed the state’s Department of Health and Human Services to seek waivers from the federal government allowing it to exclude abortion clinics from the state’s Medicaid provider network.

“There are a variety of agencies, clinics, and medical entities in South Carolina that receive taxpayer funding to offer important women’s health and family planning services without performing abortions,” McMaster said in a written statement. “Taxpayer dollars must not directly or indirectly subsidize abortion providers like Planned Parenthood.”

South Carolina’s three abortion providers get no money directly from the state. Nor do they get federal family dollars that flow through the state. Those grants cannot be spent on abortions, under federal law. However, the clinics  are reimbursed by Medicaid for abortions performed because a pregnancy threatens the mother’s life or resulted from rape or incest.

A federal judge in Texas temporarily blocked a similar attempt to cut off Medicaid funds to Planned Parenthood.

The state’s attorney general said Texas would appeal the ruling.

A representative of Planned Parenthood did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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