2016 GOP Field Seizes On Dishonest Excuse to Target Planned Parenthood

Republicans have been trying for years to undermine Planned Parenthood and women’s access to healthcare, be it through efforts to defund the organization, legal restrictions inserting employers into healthcare choices, or TRAP laws designed to push clinics out of business.

Now, they’re turning to an even more extreme and dishonest method, a deceptively edited and misleading video targeting Planned Parenthood staff.  Unsurprisingly, the 2016 field isn’t interested in the facts — they’re using this video hack job as one more excuse to embrace their real cause:  destroying Planned Parenthood for political gain.

The 2016 Republican Field On Defunding Planned Parenthood

Jeb Bush

2001: BUSH VETOED FUNDING FOR FAMILY PLANNING SERVICES PROVIDED THROUGH PLANNED PARENTHOOD

2001: Jeb Bush Vetoed Funding For Family Planning Services Provided To Poor Women Through Planned Parenthood. According to the St. Petersburg Times, “Even the most powerful state lawmakers were hit by Gov. Jeb Bush’s vetoes on Friday. The Republican governor vetoed $ 290-million in the state budget that lawmakers passed this spring, including more than $ 25-million for projects in two counties – Manatee and Sarasota – represented by Senate President John McKay. […] The cuts also included $ 302,843 for family planning services provided to poor women through local Planned Parenthood affiliates, money that had been provided each year for more than a decade. The share earmarked for Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida, which includes the Tampa Bay area, was $ 125,800 for services for 1,258 women. The other regional affiliates affected by the cuts are based in Jacksonville and Naples. ‘Many of our patients have no health insurance nor are eligible for Medicaid. They absolutely depend on clinics like ours,’ said Barbara A. Zdravecky, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida.” [St. Petersburg Times, 6/16/01]

2002: FUNDING CUTS CAUSED TEENS TO PAY TO RECEIVE SERVICES

2002: Bush’s $124,000 In Cuts To Planned Parenthood Caused Teens To Pay A $15 Co-Pay And $7 For Birth Control. According to the St. Petersburg Times, “Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida lost $124,000 last year from its family planning division. Bush diverted the funds to abstinence-only educational programs. Now teens who use Planned Parenthood have a $15 co-pay and must pay $7 for birth control. ‘We do charge the teens now,’ said LaWanda Walker, public affairs coordinator for Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida. ‘That we really, really hate. You need to be able to have services and make it convenient.’” [St. Petersburg Times, 1/29/03]

2015: BUSH SUPPORTED EFFORTS TO DEFUND PLANNED PARENTHOOD

2015: Jeb Bush’s Senior Adviser Said Bush Supported Efforts To “Defund Planned Parenthood.” According to the Huffington Post, “Jeb Bush supports efforts to defund Planned Parenthood, according to one of his senior advisers. Jordan Sekulow is a prominent Christian evangelical attorney and joined the former Florida governor’s team last month as a senior adviser. He spoke Saturday at the Faith and Freedom Summit in Iowa, where nine presidential hopefuls appealed to the group of conservatives in attendance. Bush, who is exploring a run and widely expected to jump into the field, skipped the event and sent Sekulow in his stead. ‘We have got to defund Planned Parenthood, by the way, and Gov. Bush supports those efforts,’ said Sekulow to applause from the crowd.” [Huffington Post, 4/27/15]

Scott Walker

2011: Walker Said He Wanted To Eliminate All Funding For Planned Parenthood, Explicitly Including Funding That Was Used For Women’s Health

Walker Said He Would “Make Sure” That Planned Parenthood “Didn’t Have Any Money, Not Just For Abortion, But Any Money For Anything.” According to The Post-Crescent, “Walker says Wisconsin would save almost $2 million annually by eliminating the Title V program – its money goes to help fund family planning centers like Planned Parenthood. Of course, while campaigning for governor, Walker told yet another conservative group that he was proud of ‘trying to defund Planned Parenthood and make sure they didn’t have any money, not just for abortion, but any money for anything.’” [The Post-Crescent, 5/26/11]

  • Planned Parenthood Only Spent Three Percent Of Its Funds On Abortions; 16 Percent Was Spent On Cancer Prevention, 35 Percent On STD Testing, And 35 Percent On Contraceptives. According to the Washington Post, “As you can see in the chart atop this post, abortion services account for about 3 percent of Planned Parenthood’s activities. That’s less than cancer screening and prevention (16 percent), STD testing for both men and women (35 percent), and contraception (also 35 percent). About 80 percent of Planned Parenthood’s users are over age 20, and 75 percent have incomes below 150 percent of the poverty line. Planned Parenthood itself estimates it prevents more than 620,000 unintended pregnancies each year, and 220,000 abortions. It’s also worth noting that federal law already forbids Planned Parenthood from using the funds it receives from the government for abortions.” [Washington Post, 2/2/12]

2011: Cut Funding In Walker’s Budget Was Used For Family Planning And Cancer Screenings

Walker’s Budget Eliminated Family Planning Services And Cancer Screenings Among Other Services. According to The Post-Crescent, “Because getting Wisconsin working is so important to him, Walker’s budget also proposed to repeal the 2009 law that requires health insurance plans to cover contraceptives. He has also proposed eliminating the Title V Maternal and Child Health program, which provides family planning services. Under this program, both women and men without insurance can receive a range of preventative and other care, including cancer screenings, access to birth control, pregnancy testing and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases.” [The Post-Crescent, 5/26/11]

2011 Budget Cut $1 Million From Planned Parenthood For Women’s Health; Walker Had Wanted To Eliminate Program Entirely

Walker Took Aim At Funding For Family Planning Services And Planned Parenthood. According to The Capital Times, “Walker’s move to spike family planning dollars is among efforts throughout the U.S. by Republicans aimed at Planned Parenthood; Republican lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives, for instance, voted on Feb. 18 to ban the use of federal funds for Planned Parenthood clinics nationwide. Federal law, however, prohibits the use of federal dollars for abortion services, as does Wisconsin law, so none of the funds targeted in Walker’s budget are used to fund abortion services.” [The Capital Times, 3/16/11]

Republican Legislators Voted To Reduce $1 Million In Funding To Planned Parenthood Received From Women’s Heath Grants. According to The Associated Press State & Local Wire, “Wisconsin’s Republican-controlled budget committee voted Wednesday to disallow any abortion providers, or those affiliated with those that perform abortions or make referrals, from receiving a state grant targeted for women’s health programs. The move would mean a loss of $1 million a year in state and federal money that currently goes to Planned Parenthood, but it wouldn’t entirely defund the organization. Planned Parenthood remains eligible for state reimbursements it receives for services provided under Medicaid programs and it also receives federal money.” [The Associated Press State & Local Wire, 5/19/11]

  • Walker Wanted To Completely Eliminate Health Grant. According to The Associated Press State & Local Wire, “Republicans on the Joint Finance Committee defended the move saying they were rescuing the program, which Gov. Scott Walker proposed eliminating entirely, at the same time they were barring Planned Parenthood from getting any of the money.” [The Associated Press State & Local Wire, 5/19/11]’

Walker Budget Proposal Cutting $1.9 Million For Family Planning Facilities. According to The Stevens Point Journal, “Walker’s budget cuts $1.9 million in state grants that support family planning facilities. According to the budget proposal, Walker wants to eliminate the grant funding in order to ‘focus scarce resources on priority programs.’” [Stevens Point Journal, 3/26/11]

Wisconsin State Journal: “Walker’s Proposed Family Planning Cut Could Threaten An $11 Million Federal Grant” For Women’s, Children’s Services. According to Wisconsin State Journal, “Gov. Scott Walker’s proposed family planning cut could threaten an $11 million federal grant for prenatal care, immunizations and other services for women and children, Democratic legislators said Wednesday. But the state Department of Health Services will find another way to meet a state spending requirement to get the federal grant, spokesman Seth Boffeli said.” [Wisconsin State Journal, 4/7/11]

Cut Funding Was Used By Rural Health Clinics And Health Care Providers As Well As Planned Parenthood

Walker’s Budget Eliminated $1.9 Million In State Funding For Birth Control And Health Screenings, Which Went To Health Care Providers And Planned Parenthood. According to Wisconsin State Journal, “Walker’s proposed biennial budget, released Tuesday, would eliminate $1.9 million in state grants for birth control and health screenings, which go to Planned Parenthood and other providers. With federal matching funds, the grants amount to about $4 million a year, said Amanda Harrington, spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood. The budget also would repeal a law that went into effect last year requiring commercial health plans to cover prescription birth control. The law affects about a third of the state population, as the other two-thirds are uninsured or covered by self-insured plans or government insurance.” [Wisconsin State Journal, 3/4/11]

Walker’s Budget Proposed Cutting Funds To Rural Reproductive Health Clinics. According to Wausau Daily Herald, “A Wausau-based clinic system that offers reproductive health services won’t have to close any of its rural locations after state lawmakers maintained a grant that funds those facilities. The state Joint Committee on Finance voted Wednesday to cut just 10 percent of the state grant, rather than the entire $1.9 million as proposed in Gov. Scott Walker’s budget. Lon Newman, executive director of Family Planning Health Services, said that his small, rural clinics that lose money annually and rely on the grant funding to survive will no longer face the risk of closing. ‘We’re going to have to tighten up like everybody else in this budget,’ he said. ‘But it means the grants are still going to be there to give that base funding.’ Immediately after Walker’s original budget was released earlier this year, Newman said clinics in Taylor, Juneau, Lincoln and Adams counties could be forced to close.” [Wausau Daily Herald, 5/20/11]

2013: Walker Claimed That He Stopped Funding For Planned Parenthood

AUDIO AVAILABLE: Walker: “We Stopped Funding For Planned Parenthood.” In his book, unintimidated, Walker wrote, “In our 2011 budget, we stopped funding for Planned Parenthood. Instead, the state now contracts with less controversial organizations (like county governments) to promote health care for women. I also signed legislation prohibiting any health plan offered through an exchange operating in Wisconsin from covering abortion, and a bill that requires schools that teach sex education to stress abstinence as the only reliable way to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. At any other time, these might have been huge fights— but because of the fight over Act 10, they received little notice.” [Unintimidated, 11/19/13 p. 216 Kindle edition]

Marco Rubio

OPPOSITION

Rubio: “I Have Problems With What Planned Parenthood Does.” In an appearance on Fox News’ “Fox and Friends,” Rubio said, “First of all, no program can be untouched. This notion by some of my colleagues here that this program can’t be touched and somehow it can’t be on the table is absurd. I don’t care what they do. There’s no program in our budget that should be off the table in terms of looking at it and understanding whether it’s justified or not. Second of all, we simply can’t afford to continue fund things like this. We are adding $12 trillion to our debt over the next ten years. That’s outrageous. I’m going to vote to defund it. Third, I have problems with what … 4/14/11]

DEFUNDING

2011: Rubio Said He Would Defund Planned Parenthood. While appearing on Fox News, when asked about defunding Planned Parenthood Rubio said, “Some of my colleagues here that this program can’t be touched, that somehow it can’t be on the table is absurd. I don’t care what they do. […] We simply can’t afford to continue to fund things like this. […] I’m going to vote to defund it. And I have problems with what Planned Parenthood does and what the aim of the organization is. And it’s not their stated aim, it’s what they actually do.” [Fox News, 4/14/11]

Rubio Voted Twice To Eliminate Funding for Planned Parenthood

2011: Rubio Voted For A Bill To Defund Planned Parenthood. In April 2011, Rubio voted for prohibiting any funds appropriated in the recently-passed bill funding the government through the end of fiscal year 2011 from being made available to Planned Parenthood or any of its affiliates. The vote was on a continuing resolution that, according to the Congressional Research Service, “[d]irect[ed] the Clerk of the House of Representatives to make a correction in the enrollment of H.R. 1473 (Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, 2011) to prohibit any funds under such Act from being made available to Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc. or any affiliate of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc.” That change would have been made prior to sending H.R. 1473 – which had already passed both the House and Senate – to the president. The Senate rejected the concurrent resolution by vote of 42 to 58. [Senate Vote 60, 4/14/11; CRS Summary, H Con Res 36, 4/14/11]

Rubio Voted For Eliminating FY2011 Federal Funding For Planned Parenthood. In March 2011, Rubio voted for prohibiting any funds in the remainder of FY2011 from being used to fund Planned Parenthood. The provision was part of a continuing resolution to fund the federal government until the end of FY 2011 that, according to Congressional Quarterly, “would prohibit any funds in the bill from being made available to Planned Parenthood Federation of America Inc. or its affiliates.” The bill was rejected by the Senate by a vote of 44 to 56. The bill number was later used as the vehicle for another piece of legislation. [Senate Vote 36, 3/9/11; Congressional Actions, H.R. 1; Congressional Quarterly, 3/1/11]

Mike Huckabee

Mike Huckabee: “We Need To Demand This Congress Vote To Defund Planned Parenthood.” According to Susan B Anthony List, “‘Life begins as conception, period. What makes this nation unique is that we have a belief that every life has intrinsic value and worth. It’s a horrific thought that our government provides funding to an organization that provides abortions to so many women. We need to demand this Congress vote to defund Planned Parenthood. Our tax dollars should never be used to provide abortions and our government should put an end to it immediately.’ –Statement provided to SBA List, April 2, 2011” [SBA List, Viewed 7/15/15]

Rick Santorum

Rick Santorum’s Platform Includes Defunding Planned Parenthood. According to the Desmoines Register, “Former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum today proposed aconservative social and cultural policy agenda that includes removing liberal federal appeals court judges, defunding Planned Parenthood, kicking openly gay soldiers out of the military and seeking a constitutional ban on abortions.” [Des Moines Register 11/4/11]

Rick Perry

Rick Perry Signed Legislation Defunding Planned Parenthood In Texas. According to Life News, Perry said “The video showing a Planned Parenthood employee selling the body parts of aborted children is a disturbing reminder of the organization’s penchant for profiting off the tragedy of a destroyed human life. It is because of stories like this that I signed legislation defunding Planned Parenthood in the state of Texas – to protect human life and the health and safety of Texans.” [Life News, 7/14/15]

John Kasich

Kasich Signed Budget Defunding Planned Parenthood. According to The Christian Science Monitor, “If North Carolina and Virginia have only recently become electoral battlegrounds, Ohio and Wisconsin are veterans. But with Republican governors, they, too, have now passed new abortion restrictions. In Ohio, Gov. John Kasich (R) just signed a two-year budget that requires clinics to have admitting privileges at hospitals, but not public ones. It also defunds Planned Parenthood; targets funds to “crisis pregnancy centers,” which discourage abortion; and requires an ultrasound test before an abortion, among other provisions.” [CSM, 7/30/13]

Ben Carson

Ben Carson Ran An Internet Petition To Defund Planned Parenthood. On his website, Ben Carson has a petition to defund planned parenthood. In it he said, “Congress must act NOW! Please sign my petition to Congress demanding that they stop all public funds to Planned Parenthood.” [BenCarson.com, viewed 7/15/15]

Ted Cruz

Cruz Called For Defunding Planned Parenthood. According to The Hill “Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) is calling for a full investigation into Planned Parenthood after a high-level official was caught in an undercover video discussing the harvesting of aborted fetal tissue.  ‘Congress should immediately begin an investigation of Planned Parenthood’s activities regarding the sale and transfer of aborted body parts, including who is obtaining them and what they are being used for,’ Cruz wrote in a statement late Tuesday. … Cruz also renewed calls for lawmakers to “fully defund” Planned Parenthood, a long-time rallying cry among anti-abortion Republicans.” [The Hill, 7/15/15]

Carly Fiorina

Fiorina Supported Defunding Planned Parenthood. In a TV appearance, Salon.com’s Joan Walsh said, “Carly Fiorina is anti-choice, she wants to defund Planned Parenthood, she opposes the Affordable Care Act. All things the poll show women disagree with her on. So, you know, John McCain made a very desperate move in 2008 to add Sarah Palin to the ticket hoping he could kind of bring over some of those Hillary voters. That didn’t work. Carly Fiorina is not going to work either.” [MSNBC , 5/4/15]

Chris Christie

Christie Vetoed Funding For Planned Parenthood Six Times

President Of New Jersey Chapter Of NOW Said Christie Had “Single-Handedly Defunded Planned Parenthood In New Jersey.” According to Bloomberg News, “Deb Huber, acting president of the New Jersey chapter of the National Organization for Women, said that the governor ‘single-handedly defunded Planned Parenthood in New Jersey.’ ‘He doesn’t brag about it in those terms, but wait until he runs for president,’ she said. ‘You may hear those words coming out of his mouth.’” [Bloomberg News, 7/28/14]

In 2010, Christie Vetoed Legislation Restoring $7.5 Million In State Funding To Family Planning Services. According to the Associated Press, “Women’s health care advocates pressed the governor to put back $7.5 million in state funding for 58 family planning centers around the state. Christie’s budget eliminated all state funding for the centers, about a quarter of their total budgets. The clinics also get money from the federal government and private sources. Sen. Loretta Weinberg and Assemblywoman Linda Stender said the money to pay for the restoration could come from overbudgeted employee prescription drug program. Christie, however, questioned the legitimacy of the funding source. ‘It’s a sad day when the governor of the State of New Jersey decides to put political ideology ahead of the health and safety of women and men across the Garden State,’ Weinberg said.” [Associated Press, 7/23/10]

In 2011, Christie Vetoed $7.5 Million For Family-Planning Clinics. According to the Home News Tribune, “Christie axed $50 million Democrats added to help cities and towns hire police officers and firefighters, $7.5 million added for family-planning services and $3 million restored for New Jersey After 3 after-school programs. He deleted $7 million for AIDS drug distribution and reinstated the elimination of funding to Urban Enterprise Zones. (The zones’ reduced sales tax rate is unchanged.)” [Home News Tribune, 6/30/11]

In 2012, Christie Vetoed $7.5 Million In Family Planning Services. According to the Asbury Park Press, “Christie also vetoed bills that would have given municipalities two additional years to spend affordable housing trust funds before they revert to the state; immediately reversed a reduction made in 2010 to the earned income tax credit for the working poor; gradually provided municipalities a $331 million increase in energy-tax aid; spent $7.5 million more on family planning services; provided $10 million for a flood mitigation project in Garfield; and let towns spend trust funds to convert foreclosed homes into affordable housing.” [Asbury Park Press, 6/30/12]

In 2013, Christie Vetoed $7.5 Million In Funding For Family Planning Organizations. According to the Newark Star-Ledger, “Pou said the budget fails to provide additional funding for pre-school programs, and does not restore a $7.5 million cut for family planning organizations like Planned Parenthood. ‘The fact is that this budget once again ignores things that are so very much needed,’ Pou said. ‘We are spending money unnecessarily in a special election but can’t come up with money for women’s services.’” [Newark Star-Ledger, 6/20/13]

In 2014, Christie Cut $7.5 Million For Family Planning Clinics. According to Asbury Park Press, “Christie deleted $7.5 million that Democrats had added for family planning clinics, $5 million for Legal Services of New Jersey, $3.5 million for a FamilyCare and Medicaid enrollment campaign, $3 million for charter schools, $3 million for library aid and $2.4 million for a mental health care pilot program for children, among other cuts.” [Asbury Park Press, 7/1/14]

In 2015, Christie Vetoed $7.5 Million In Family Planning Services. According to Politifact, “In 2011, 2012, and 2013 Christie vetoed the legislature’s repeated attempt to restore the $7.5 million in funding for family planning services. This amounts to 4 vetoes, plus the initial cut in funding. Depending on how you count the vetoes, Ultraviolet’s claim may even be a veto short. On June 29, 2015, the day before the meme was posted to the group’s Facebook page, Christie vetoed family planning services funding restoration for the fifth time. But, if you consider Christie’s initial cut in funding, then he has vetoed Planned Parenthood funding six times. Christie himself includes the initial cut in the veto count. In an interview on Fox News June 30, 2015, he boasted, ‘(I) vetoed Planned Parenthood funding just this past week for the sixth time out of the budget in New Jersey.’” [Politifact, 7/13/15]

Rand Paul

April 2011: Paul Voted To Defund Planned Parenthood. On April 14 2011 Paul Voted for an amendment that, according to Congressional Quarterly, would have “direct[ed] the House clerk to make a correction in the enrollment of a bill (HR 1473) to provide $1.055 trillion in discretionary funding for fiscal 2011, and insert a section that would bar the use of funds made available in the bill to the Planned Parenthood Federation of America Inc. or its affiliates.” The amendment was defeated by a vote of 42 to 58. [Congressional Quarterly, 4/14/11;  Senate Vote 60, 4/14/11]

Bobby Jindal

Jindal Denied Planned Parenthood Operations In New Orleans. According to the Washington Post, “Planned Parenthood began construction here last year on a clinic that would perform abortions and provide other medical services for women. […] That sign is now crumpled on the ground behind a chain-link fence at the project’s abandoned construction site, victim of efforts by Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) and other abortion opponents to block the clinic. The push against the project began last year, when the Catholic archbishop of New Orleans wrote a public letter threatening to blacklist contractors on the clinic from any of the church’s numerous real estate projects. That led to several subcontractors walking away from the project, delaying work on the facility. An inspector for the State Licensing Board for Contractors also began making weekly visits, which one of the major contractors said was unprecedented. Then last month Jindal’s administration denied Planned Parenthood an operating license, stating that the group failed to show the need for the clinic.” [Washington Post, 2/15/15]