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Indiana will likely stop defending a law that stripped Medicaid funds from Planned Parenthood after the Supreme Court declined to hear the case Tuesday, an attorney who represents the nation's largest abortion provider said.

Indiana is among more than a dozen states that have enacted or considered laws to prevent taxpayers' money from funding organizations that provide abortion. The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Oct. 23 that the law targeting Planned Parenthood went too far because it denied women the right to choose their own medical providers.

"I assume at this point the state will give up in its claim that that portion of the statue is valid under the Social Security Act," said Ken Falk, legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana. The case now returns to U.S. District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt, who granted the initial preliminary injunction to temporarily block the law, precipitating the state's appeals.

Neither the state senator who sponsored the bill or the Family and Social Services Administration - the agency tasked with enforcing the law - had immediate comment.

"My office always contended this is ultimately a dispute between the state and federal government, not between a private medical provider and the state," Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller said in a statement. Zoeller's office handled the state's appeal.


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