Texas GOP Strives To Make The State Contraceptive-Free

For conservatives in Texas the campaign against Planned Parenthood isn’t just about trying to run the women’s health care provider out of business. It’s about trying to eradicate contraception from the state.

As the Texas Observer reports, in the year since Texas slashed family planning funding 146 clinics in total have lost state funds. Most of those clinics are clumped in the Panhandle, Central Texas and on the border with Mexico. More than 60 of those clinics have shut down permanently and the number of organizations that help poor women plan their pregnancies has been cut in half.

Of the more than 60 clinics that were forced to close, only 12 were run by Planned Parenthood.

Of course conservatives in Texas knew exactly what they were doing. From the Observer:

[I]n its 2011 session, the Texas Legislature cut the state’s family planning program by two-thirds. Public health experts warned lawmakers at the time that by defunding Texas’s family planning system, clinics would close and a spike in disease, pregnancies and abortions would follow. Regardless, they slashed the budget. Lawmakers were quite clear about their motivation: They hoped to drive abortion providers out of business. Their specific target—Planned Parenthood—also provides family planning and preventive health care to low income women. In their zeal to attack Planned Parenthood, politicians designed a funding formula that caused collateral damage. They defunded many other family planning clinics that aren’t connected to Planned Parenthood and don’t offer any abortion services.

It gets worse. The federally qualified health centers—which lawmakers said could provide family planning services to low-income women and make up for the cuts—have themselves experienced a funding crunch and are struggling to absorb demand. The result is that costs have shifted to patients, and exceptionally poor women now make hard choices about paying for their well-woman care. Some will find the cash, but an alarming number won’t. Indeed, the bipartisan Legislative Budget Board estimated that last year’s cuts would lead to more than 250,000 women losing services and 20,000 additional births covered by Medicaid.

That means in Texas women are expected to get their care from federally qualified health centers, whether they are geographically accessible or available or not. And with the newly designed Women’s Health Program funding requirements, those health centers that are there to fill in the gaps will offer only a portion of care women have a right to access.

These are dark days for the women in Texas and, thus, for women across the country.


Related Stories:

Texans Flee To Mexico For Reproductive Health Care

Planned Parenthood Sues Texas Over Poor Women’s Access To Health Care

Photo from brains the head via flickr.


Julie R.
Julie R5 years ago

NOT EVERYONE IN TEXAS AGREES WITH THIS!!!! Please...all of you stop stereotyping Texans!!!

Julie R.
Julie R5 years ago

@ Fred... I'm a native Texan, but that doesn't mean I agree or like what the government is doing, and it doesn't mean it reflects how we all feel.

This action is so ridiculous. The state government is reverting back to the "Stone Age". Not all women go to Planned Parenthood for contraception. What an ignorant assumption! The women need assistance with general gyn./ob issues as well. UGH...... Very frustrating!!!

Alison Baker
Alison B5 years ago

Proof that the GOP's declared a war on women.

aileen cheetham
AILEEN C5 years ago


Fred Harrington
Fred H5 years ago

Anyone who lives in Texas does so at their own peril.

Dan B.
Dan Brook5 years ago

Etch-a-Sketch Rmoney Lyin' Ryan = of, by, and for the rich white men.

The regressive Republican Party of No is obstructionist, mean-spirited, thuggish, religiously fanatical, scientifically ignorant, corrupt, hypocritical, untrustworthy, xenophobic, racist, sexist, homophobic, evolution and global warming denying, oily, anti-environment, anti-health, anti-consumer, anti-choice, anti-birth control, anti-education, anti-student loans, anti-equal pay, anti-99%, pro-banks, pro-big corporations, pro-voter suppression, union busting, Medicare mashing and Social Security slashing, fiscally irresponsible, misleading, authoritarian, selfish, greedy, out-of-touch, dishonest, lacking compassion, warmongering, and otherwise dangerous.

Don't make a Mittstake. NEVER vote for Republicans!

Martha Eberle
Martha Eberle5 years ago

Living in Texas is frustrating beyond belief. I am too old that family planning or abortion services matter, but I CARE about other women. We fought this fight in the 70s, and now young women who have grown up knowing that they have power over their own bodies, will have to fight for it again -- I will be right by your side.

Tammy B.
Tammy B.5 years ago

This is all so political. Seriously the goverment does not belong in any State's bedroom. That is just too personal! What kind of plan does Texas have for the children born which are unwanted, neglected, parents can't afford to raise? I hope they have a lot of money and more to chip in when that runs out. Last time I checked it takes a lot of money to raise a child. Ask Doctor Phil!

Ira L.
Ellie L5 years ago


Luvenia V.
Luvenia V5 years ago

With any luck the people with brains will get to leave Texas and be replaced by others with NO self respect or brains. I do wish they could all gather there and live as they see fit. I would however feel sorry for any children they would give birth to.

I wish all the nut cases would move and live in one or two states that way we could keep an eye on them see they don't spread their stupidity. Rememeber this and vote the idiots OUT!!!