DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa Republicans may order the state to foot the bill for a new family planning program that excludes funding for Planned Parenthood.
Key GOP lawmakers confirmed Monday they plan to use state money to fund the estimated $3 million program, which requires Iowa to forfeit millions in federal Medicaid dollars.
Such a move would tap the Iowa Department of Human Services to pay for the program amid separate budget cuts, raising criticism from Democrats that the GOP plan is short-sighted.
The move — first reported by the Bleeding Heartland blog — would stray from Gov. Terry Branstad’s original suggestion to use separate federal grant money to pay for the program that purposely excludes health clinics that provide abortions.
Republicans say despite budget cuts, defunding abortion-providing clinics remains a top priority.