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Arkansas Senate votes to defund Planned Parenthood and sex education

The Arkansas state Senate passed a measure on Tuesday to defund Planned Parenthood and all other entities that provide abortions or patient referrals for abortions. The bill also cuts the funding for a Planned Parenthood-administered comprehensive sex education program in the state's public high schools.

No more sex education? That should bode well for a state that just banned abortion at 12 weeks.

The Senate measure also prohibits any organization that holds contracts with abortion providers or referrers, including, as Laura Basset at the Huffington Post notes, power companies, water companies, health insurers and medical suppliers, from receiving any state money.

Despite the fact that Planned Parenthood does not currently receive any state funding for abortion care or family planning services, bill sponsor Republican state Rep. Gary Stubblefield and other supporters argue that it will prevent taxpayer money from paying for abortions. In reality, the only loser under the new measure is the state's sex education program. And, of course, Arkansas students.

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