Pennsylvania Considers Defunding Planned Parenthood
"Planned Parenthood, we're going to get rid of that."
All the whacko states are doing it, defunding Planned Parenthood. Now add Pennsylvania to the list.
Pennsylvania State Rep. Daryl Metcalfe (R-Butler) will introduce legislation on Wednesday that would defund Planned Parenthood, adding his state to a list of four others that have pending bills to strip public funds from the family planning provider.
Metcalfe's bill, the Whole Woman’s Health Funding Priority Act, would put health care providers that offer abortion services at the bottom of the priority list for state funding. The anti-abortion activist group Susan B. Anthony List and the Alliance Defense Fund co-wrote the bill, which closely resembles the one Arizona lawmakers used to defund Planned Parenthood earlier this year.
The Susan B. Anthony List appears to be picking up where ALEC left off, becoming a right-wing, social issues legislation mill. Metcalfe's bill is like the effort in Ohio that would put Planned Parenthood at the end of the list of health care providers to receive funding, rather than cutting it off entirely. That's what Texas did, losing Medicaid funding and ending up in federal court over it. Arizona followed Texas in an outright ban. Kansas, Michigan, Oklahoma are also considering defunding bills now, giving us a preview of what could happen with Mitt Romney in the White House, warns one advocate.
"What’s happening in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Kansas is a preview of what would happen in all 50 states if Mitt Romney is elected," said Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America. "Planned Parenthood won't let politics interfere with the health care that one in five women in America relies on at some point in her life. Planned Parenthood doors are open, and they’ll be open tomorrow."
In just this handful of states, as many as 350,000 people could be cut off entirely from health care, Planned Parenthood estimates. That's because in the rural and medically underserved areas of these states, Planned Parenthood is the sole provider for women's health services. Which of course doesn't matter to Republicans. Take Romney's word for it: "Planned Parenthood, we're going to get rid of that."