The U.S. Supreme Court has allowed lower court rulings stopping Louisiana and Kansas from defunding Planned Parenthood to stand, with Justice Brett Kavanaugh joining the majority.
In an order released Monday, the high court declined to hear an appeal in the cases of Andersen v. Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri and Gee v. Planned Parenthood of Gulf Coast.
Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Kavanaugh were part of the six-judge majority. Earlier this year, Kavanaugh weathered a heated confirmation process in which many progressive activists claimed that if he joined the Supreme Court, he would represent a militantly anti-abortion presence.
Justice Clarence Thomas authored a dissent to the decision to not hear either appeal, being joined by Justices Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch.
Justice Thomas argued that the Supreme Court should have heard the appeals since they deal with an “important and recurring” question of “whether Medicaid recipients have a private right of action to challenge a State’s determination of ‘qualified’ Medicaid providers.”
“Five Circuits have held that Medicaid recipients have such a right, and one Circuit has held that they do not. The last three Circuits to consider the question have themselves been divided,” wrote Justice Thomas. “Because of this Court’s inaction, patients in different States—even patients with the same providers—have different rights to challenge their State’s provider decisions.”
Thomas also speculated in his dissent that the majority of the high court might have refused to take the cases because they had to do with Planned Parenthood.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Michael Gryboski