Office of the Governor Rick Perry

Governor's Initiatives - 10th Amendment

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States are best positioned to deal with state issues, a fact the founding fathers had in mind when they included the 10th Amendment in the Bill of Rights.  Over the years, that right has been clouded by ongoing federal encroachments that are reflected in a recent series of attempts by Washington to seize even more control over numerous Texas programs, including some of the most successful initiatives of their kinds in the country.

Action Items

» EPA
Texas is a national leader in reducing emissions and known pollutants, and advancing renewable energy sources all while remaining a leader in the nation's energy production. We have successfully balanced the need for environmental improvements with fostering economic growth, new investment, and job creation. Texas continues to advance new, clean energy technology by using market incentives and stable regulation, not costly mandates and taxes.

The Obama administration has taken yet another step in its campaign to harm our economy and impose federal control over Texas. With their efforts to take control of a permitting process that the Clean Air Act allows to be delegated to the states, the EPA is on the verge of killing thousands of Texas jobs and derailing a program that has effectively cleaned Texas' air. An increasingly activist EPA is ignoring the progress Texas has made to clean its air over the last decade, and should instead look to our state's successful approach to issues concerning energy and the environment.

» National Health Care Reform
Texas has consistently been at the forefront in innovative efforts to control medical costs, utilizing market-based solutions to improve the quality of treatments and widen access to care for all Texans. Governor Perry has called for a rejection of federal mandates, and instead promoted state-based solutions, such as Texas' successful reform of the medical liability tort system in 2003. Reform has brought critically-needed doctors back to traditionally-underserved portions of Texas, many in specialties – such as obstetrics – that had been largely chased out of the state by out-of-control trial lawyers. Governor Perry has also championed programs to increase the number of nurses in the state and led the effort to invest millions of dollars in biotechnology and the health care of tomorrow, leveraging the Emerging Technology Fund to help get new technology, treatments and cures to market more quickly. Through common sense laws and the spirit of innovation, Texas is well-positioned for the future of health care.

» Women's Health Program
The Texas Women's Health Program provides preventative health care to more than 100,000 Texas women, including screenings for breast and cervical cancer, diabetes and hypertension, among other services. First implemented in 2007, the program is being phased out by the Obama Administration.

Under federal law, state leaders are left to administer the program and set criteria for who is considered a qualified provider. Consistent with state and federal law, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission has developed the program to ensure continued access to care by qualified providers across Texas.

The Obama Administration rejected the state's waiver application because Texas law excludes abortion providers and their affiliates, like Planned Parenthood, from a list of qualified providers. This is despite the fact Planned Parenthood represents less than 2 percent of enrolled providers statewide.

Following the administration’s decision, Gov. Perry directed Health and Human Services Commissioner Kyle Janek to establish TWHP to continue providing the services WHP provided, until the decision is reversed by Congress or the courts.

News & Announcements

  • Thursday, March 15, 2012 • Austin, Texas • Press Release
    Statement by Gov. Rick Perry on Obama Administration’s Denial of Health Care to More Than 100,000 Texas Women
    It is the height of political posturing for the Obama Administration to put the interests of abortion providers and their affiliates, like Planned Parenthood, over the well-being of more than 100,000 low-income Texas women. I will not stand by and let this Administration abandon these Texas women to advance its political agenda; Texas will fund these services with or without the federal government, Gov. Perry said.
  • Wednesday, March 14, 2012 • Austin, Texas • Press Release
    In Case You Missed It: Texas Legislators Support Gov. Perry on Women’s Health Program
    A majority of Texas Legislators spoke out in support of Gov. Perry's efforts to enforce state law prohibiting tax dollars from going to abortion providers and their affiliates, which has been in effect since 2005. The members issued statements that were signed by 19 senators and 77 house members.
  • Friday, March 09, 2012 • Austin, Texas • Press Release
    Statement by Gov. Rick Perry’s Communications Director Allison Castle Regarding Sebelius Announcement that Feds Will Deny Women’s Health Program Waiver
    The fact that the Obama Administration would announce its decision to deny care for more than 100,000 low income women during a press event before giving official notice to the state is a clear demonstration of the political motivation behind this decision. This tactic is an affront to the more than 100,000 women served by this program, Communications Director Allison Castle said.
  • Thursday, March 08, 2012 • Austin, Texas • Press Release
    Gov. Perry Pledges State Will Take Care of Texas Women If Obama Administration Ends Women’s Health Program Funding, as Threatened
    Gov. Rick Perry today said he is unwilling to let more than 100,000 low-income Texas women pay the price for the Obama Administration's unwavering loyalty to abortion providers and their affiliates. The governor has instructed Texas Health and Human Services Commissioner Tom Suehs to work with legislative leadership identify state funding to continue services provided by the Women's Health Program (WHP) if the Obama Administration follows through with their threat to cut federal funding and kick Texas women out of the program. Gov. Perry has also notified President Obama that we will not stand by as his administration attempts to violate states' rights under the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
  • Thursday, March 01, 2012 • Austin, Texas • Editorial
    Obama Administration Placing Pro-Abortion Politics Over Women’s Health
    President Obama's Administration plans to cancel funding for a long-standing and cost-effective health and wellness program for more than 100,000 Texas women. This move will cut off access to screenings for breast and cervical cancer, hypertension and diabetes, STD testing and family planning services for Texas women who otherwise could not afford them.