Ruling: Kansas can strip Planned Parenthood funds

FILE - In this Friday, June 22, 2012 photo, Dr. Ann Kristin Neuhaus, center, sits between two of her attorneys, Kelly Kauffman, left, and Bob Eye, right, as the Kansas State Board of Healing Arts in Topeka, Kan., decides to revoke her medical license. The board plans to appeal a state-court judge's ruling overturning the board's action,which dealt with Neuhaus' referrals of young patients for late-term abortions. (AP Photo/John Hanna)

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — An appeals court has overturned a federal judge’s order that forced Kansas to keep funding two family planning clinics despite a state law aimed at stripping a Planned Parenthood chapter of federal money.

At issue in Tuesday’s ruling is money distributed to states under Title X, a federally financed family planning program. A Kansas law requires the state to first allocate the Title X money to public health departments and hospitals, which leaves no funds for specialty family planning clinics like Planned Parenthood.

A lower court had ruled that Kansas couldn’t take the money away from Planned Parenthood.

But a divided federal appeals court in Denver overturned that ruling, rejecting Planned Parenthood’s claims that losing the money amounted to a violation of free-speech rights for associating with abortion providers.

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