Appeals courts says Texas can bar funds for Planned Parenthood

The state had acted quickly in response to Yeakel's preliminary injunction, filing an emergency motion for stay on Monday night with the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

The motion was granted by Judge Jerry E. Smith.

Planned Parenthood, which had praised Monday's decision as a "victory" for women's health, expressed disappointment but said it remains "optimistic."

"[W]hen the state's motion for a stay is fully considered, the district court’s order ... will stand," Melaney A. Linton of Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast said in a statement.

Yeakel wrote Monday of his concern that withdrawing funds for the family-planning organization could lead to the "immediate loss of access to necessary medical services by several thousand Texas women." 

Those services include screenings for cancer, high blood pressure and diabetes, as well as birth control prescriptions and STD tests, according to Planned Parenthood.

The original suit was filed by eight Planned Parenthood clinics that would have lost funding under the 2011 law even though they do not perform abortions.

They argued that the law limits their constitutional rights to free association and equal protection under the law.

Texas has threatened to shut down its Women's Health Program altogether if it is forced to give funds to Planned Parenthood, reports stated.