- Associated Press - Friday, February 12, 2016

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - A powerful Republican lawmaker is demanding that Texas health officials explain why two state employees co-authored a study suggesting that cuts to Planned Parenthood are curbing access to women’s health services.

State Sen. Jane Nelson sent a letter Friday to Texas Health Commissioner Chris Traylor. Her request is the latest fallout from a New England Journal of Medicine study that has angered Republicans, who say the findings are flawed and biased.

The study found that fewer Texas women obtained long-acting birth control after GOP lawmakers booted Planned Parenthood from a state women’s health program in 2013.

Two researchers with the Texas Health and Human Services Commission were among the study’s five co-authors.

Traylor hasn’t said whether he will punish his employees. But his spokesman says they agree with Nelson’s concerns.

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