KHN Morning Briefing

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Missouri Lawmakers Recommend Contempt Proceedings For St. Louis Planned Parenthood Head

The president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri and James Miller, owner of Brentwood-based Pathology Services, Inc., failed to appear in front of the committee after they were subpoenaed. Missouri lawmakers are also proposing a bill that would criminalize women using drugs while pregnant.

St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Mo. Senate Committee Wants Contempt Proceedings For Heads Of St. Louis Planned Parenthood, Pathology Lab
The woman in charge of the St. Louis Planned Parenthood -- and the owner of the pathology lab the facility contracts with -- could face jail time and a fine for failing to comply with a Missouri Senate subpoena. Mary Kogut, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri, and James Miller, owner of Brentwood-based Pathology Services, Inc., were issued subpoenas in November for documents and witnesses to appear before a Missouri Senate committee investigating the abortion and health care provider. Neither appeared before the Senate committee or sent the documents requested, even though Miller testified a month prior in front of a House committee investigating the same matter. (Stuckey, 1/4)

The Associated Press: Missouri Panel Urges Contempt For Planned Parenthood Leader
A Republican-led Missouri legislative panel has recommended that the leader of a Planned Parenthood chapter should be held in contempt for refusing to share abortion-related documents with lawmakers. The request targeting Mary Kogut, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri, came from the Interim Committee on the Sanctity of Life, a panel Missouri senators launched last year after anti-abortion activists released videos they said showed Planned Parenthood personnel negotiating the sale of fetal organs. ... A letter from a Planned Parenthood attorney sent last month cited patient privacy concerns and questioned the Senate's authority to subpoena private organizations, among other concerns. (Ballentine, 1/4)

The Associated Press: Missouri Looks At Criminalizing Using Drugs While Pregnant
A Missouri lawmaker is proposing that the state make it a crime for a woman to use drugs while pregnant in an effort he says could encourage women to seek treatment but that opponents say could do the opposite. Rep. Jered Taylor, a Republican from Nixa, said his bill is intended to get women into treatment before they give birth. He said the bill could push offenders into drug court, where their sentences would be deferred if they completed treatment. But threatening pregnant women with legal penalties could drive them away from seeking health care, said Farah Diaz-Tello, a spokeswoman for National Advocates for Pregnant Women. (Aton, 1/4)

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