The Arizona affiliate of Planned Parenthood, the tax-funded abortion behemoth and a top ally of President Obama, filed a federal lawsuit against state officials this week in an effort to stop a new law halting the flow of taxpayer funds to abortion providers. Republican Gov. Jan Brewer, however, expressed confidence that the effort to protect citizens from being coerced into financing abortion would be upheld.
As the largest abortion provider in America and a vicious lobbying group when so-called “choice” is under threat, Planned Parenthood receives hundreds of millions of tax dollars every year from federal, state, and local governments — about half of its budget, in fact. But in recent times, activists across the nation have been relatively successful in their efforts to pass state laws stopping government subsidies for abortionists. In just the last two years, lawmakers in more than a dozen states have succeeded in passing legislation to de-fund Planned Parenthood.
One of those widely celebrated bills was signed earlier this year in Arizona. Gov. Brewer said it was a “common-sense law that tightens existing state regulations and closes loopholes in order to ensure that taxpayer dollars are not used to fund abortions, whether directly or indirectly. By signing this measure into law, I stand with the majority of Americans who oppose the use of taxpayer funds for abortion.”
But Planned Parenthood — which analysts noted “feels that it’s entitled to be on the taxpayer dole” — cannot allow the movement to continue if it hopes to keep raking in public money for its controversial operations. So, in conjunction with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the abortion giant filed suit on Monday in federal court seeking to overturn the law.
"It is wrong for the state to tell Arizonans who they can and cannot see for their health care,” complained Planned Parenthood Arizona CEO Bryan Howard (photo at top) in a statement, bemoaning the fact that thousands of Medicaid patients would no longer be able to funnel tax money into his organization’s coffers and would instead have to spend the public money elsewhere. “The men and women of this state have the right to see the health care provider they deem is best for them."
Of course, Howard’s statement is absurd on its face — the state is not telling anyone who they can or cannot see for their healthcare, only that they cannot visit abortion providers on the taxpayers’ dime. And despite his claims, men and women in Arizona still have the right to see the healthcare provider they choose, just as long as they do not use taxpayer money at an abortion provider. Analysts also noted that there are plenty of healthcare providers in Arizona that do not terminate the lives of unborn children that can pick up Planned Parenthood’s former patients.
"Legislators want to enact policies that protect taxpayers from subsidizing the abortion industry," said Texas Right to Life Director Elizabeth Graham. "They've sent a clear message to Planned Parenthood or any other agency that provides abortion: Stop doing abortion, and you can have all the health-care dollars you want." Texas recently approved a similar law, but the abortion giant also filed suit there and succeeded in having taxpayer funding temporarily restored as the lawsuit moves forward.
But state officials in Arizona still seemed optimistic that their measure would survive and taxpayers would not be forced to continue subsidizing abortionists against their will. "Governor Brewer is confident in the constitutionality of this law and confident it will be upheld by the court," spokesman Matthew Benson was quoted as saying.
Pro-abortion forces also opened another front in Arizona this month when the ACLU and its abortion-promoting allies filed a suit trying to overturn the “Mother’s Health and Safety Act,” a law banning the killing of unborn children after 20 weeks and giving women an opportunity to see their child via ultrasound before choosing to end his or her life. Activists supporting the measure, however, are not giving up.
“Once again, we see supposed ‘pro-woman’ organizations fight to protect abortion-on-demand despite the serious risks abortion presents to new moms,” said Center for Arizona Policy President Cathi Herrod, whose organization played a key role in getting the law passed and is “committed” to seeing it take effect. “The medical evidence presented during committee hearings make it clear that abortions after 20 weeks present a much greater risk to the life of the women. There is also substantial medical evidence that preborn children can feel pain at this age.... Americans support common sense standards that protect women from the dangerous practices of the abortion industry.”
Abortion advocates, however, will not surrender easily either. Planned Parenthood, for example, continues to use its massive taxpayer subsidies to sue state governments, demanding that citizens be forced to continue subsidizing the organization and its deeply controversial activities: abortion, political lobbying, sex "education" for school children, handing out birth control, and litigating to stop efforts aimed at restricting the killing of unborn children or even tax funding for abortionists.
And the abortion giant has friends in high places to keep the tax dollars flowing. President Obama, who was endorsed by Planned Parenthood this year as the organization announced it would spend vast sums to ensure his re-election, has gone so far as to defy state officials who revoked taxpayer funding to the abortion giant, pledging to hand out more money extracted from the American people as a whole instead.
When Indiana adopted a law to end tax subsidies for abortion providers, for example, Obama used the state’s poor people as hostages, threatening that unless taxpayer funds continued flowing to Planned Parenthood, the federal government would withhold federal Medicaid funding. The administration has resorted to similarly shocking behavior in Texas, Tennessee, New Jersey, and New Hampshire in a bizarre effort to keep subsidies flowing to the abortion giant at all costs.
“President Obama’s loyalty to Planned Parenthood — the nation’s largest abortion business and his top political ally — knows no limits,” noted Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser. “For the second time in this month alone, the Obama administration has announced it will grant taxpayer funding to local Planned Parenthood affiliates and their allies despite action taken by state and local leaders to get taxpayers out of the abortion business.”
Planned Parenthood has also come under severe criticism in recent months, making Obama’s steadfast support even more controversial. Just last week, women’s rights activists and human rights defenders sounded the alarm about the organization’s work with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the communist dictatorship ruling mainland China in the commission of forced abortions and sterilizations to enforce the Chinese regime’s barbaric “one-child” policy.
“For decades, the UNFPA and International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) have worked hand in hand with the Chinese population control machine, which is coercive,” explained Women’s Rights Without Frontiers President Reggie Littlejohn in a congressional hearing, calling for an investigation into both groups’ involvement in the brutal forced abortions and other atrocities.
Meanwhile, multiple investigations across America — criminal, civil, and congressional — have been ongoing for quite some time. And an undercover investigation by the pro-life group Live Action recently found that the organization was a willing participant in “gendercide” — the extermination of unborn children due solely to their gender.
"We're in court and in legislatures in almost every state in the country," complained Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards without pointing out that taxpayers were funding it all. "It has just gotten crazy. This is what I hear from women — Republican women, independent women all over the country: They cannot believe that the Republican Party leadership is on a crusade to end birth-control access in America."
Of course, the “crusade” Richards was referring to is a figment of her imagination, as no Republican leaders have attempted to “end birth-control access in America.” Presumably she was talking about efforts to ensure that religious organizations with moral objections to financing birth control would be exempted from ObamaCare’s controversial mandates.
Planned Parenthood has had some initial successes in federal courts in its efforts to continue forcing state taxpayers to fund the organization and activities that opponents consider morally repugnant. But where the Arizona lawsuit goes from here remains unclear, with both sides expressing optimism about the case.
Photo of Planned Parenthood Arizona CEO Bryan Howard: AP Images
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