Dec. 20 hearing set in Planned Parenthood lawsuit

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- A judge has set a Dec. 20 hearing on Planned Parenthood's request for an injunction that would stop the Oklahoma Department of Health from ending its contracts at three Tulsa-area clinics that provide food and nutritional counseling to low-income mothers.

Judge Stephen P. Friot on Monday also scheduled a Dec. 19 pretrial conference in the lawsuit by Planned Parenthood of the Heartland against Oklahoma Health Commissioner Terry Cline.

Planned Parenthood alleges that the state's decision to terminate contracts for Planned Parenthood to administer the Women, Infant and Children program was politically motivated retaliation for the organization's support of abortion rights.

Health officials have said the decision to end the contracts was based in part on Planned Parenthood's cost per participant exceeding those of other clinics in the Tulsa area.

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