No question about it: Republicans in Congress are waging war on women.
In the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, as we write, they are working to slash the entire $317 million program of aid for family planning, known as Title X, in the 2011 spending bill, HR 1, that is expected to pass by this weekend. A proposed amendment to the bill, introduced by Rep. Mike Pence, R-Ind., would specifically bar Planned Parenthood from receiving any federal funds for any purpose.
These programs provide vital health care and health education to an estimated 5 million women and teens - birth control, cancer screenings, HIV testing and more. Planned Parenthood, in particular, is the nation's largest provider of health care and family planning education to low-income women, serving some 1.85 million women each year.
The Senate, which retains a slim Democratic majority, may not pass these cuts, but Republicans say they will keep introducing similar bills. Their aim is to kill the programs by a thousand cuts and a barrage of lies, hoaxes and intimidation.
Abortion is their main target, but not the only one. Birth control, sex education - all are in their firing sights. If these folks were so concerned to limit abortions, you'd think they would want to expand such programs, which help prevent unintended pregnancies. But no.
Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards said this week, "Under the guise of deficit reduction, the House Republican Leadership is pursuing the most politically driven assault on women's health in American history."
It's a war on women, and in particular low-income women.
"There is no doubt: cutting off millions of women from care they have no other way to afford places them at risk of sickness and death," Richards said.
If Sarah Palin needed an abortion or cervical cancer screening, she would not have to rely on a federally funded provider. With the millions she is raking in via her self-promoting efforts, she could quietly pay top dollar to a private doctor to obtain these services.
We urge our readers to contact their congressional representatives today and tell them vote "no" on the Pence amendment to defund Planned Parenthood and on any measures to eliminate family planning funding.
You can phone your member of Congress here or call 202-730-9001 to be connected.