Arizona Republicans moved forward with attempts to de-fund Planned Parenthood as the Senate approved a measure barring the use of any public money from being “funneled” to the health care provider because it performs abortions.
The prohibition approved Tuesday would affect funding for family planning and preventative care services.
The legislation is completely disingenuous and threatens the health of Arizona’s most vulnerable. State law already bars the use of public money for abortions. This broader prohibition simply is an effort to try and drive the women’s health care provider out of business.
Planned Parenthood anticipates the ban would disrupt the health care services for approximately 19,000 women. A similar ban in Texas has prompted legal challenges, but that hasn’t stopped Republicans in other states from still trying to strip Planned Parenthood of funding.
Efforts to de-fund Planned Parenthood must be placed in context with the Republican attacks on expanded health care coverage in general because it illustrates the driving philosophy that safe, affordable health care is a privilege afforded only to the rich. Arizona now joins the list of states intent on punishing poor women simply for being poor.
Photo from dmahendra via flickr.