Iowa lawmakers moved quickly this week to end funding for Planned Parenthood, and they found a perfect way to use money that would have gone to the organization, redirecting tax dollars to health clinics that don’t perform abortions.
Republican Gov. Terry Branstad urged the Republican-controlled Congress to defund the organization during his annual Condition of the State address at the Iowa Capitol.
The governor was expected to resign soon — he’s been appointed U.S. ambassador to China — and will be replaced by Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds. The Associated Press reported that a spokesperson for Reynolds said she supported Branstad’s statements.
By defunding Planned Parenthood, Iowa could stand to lose some $3 million of federal funding used for family planning services.
While the state will lose the federal money, Ben Hammes, a spokesman for Branstad, said Iowa will spend an equal amount of money on family planning services through a separate federal grant, and that money will go to organizations that don’t perform abortions, according to the AP.
“This could be a historic session,” Branstad told the Des Moines Register.
Bob Vander Plaats, chief executive officer of the Family Leader, said Monday in an email to supporters that the next few months could provide “the best chance we have had to advance family values in Iowa since the 1800s,” the Register reported.
Branstad added that many Republican bills that Senate Democrats had killed in the past can now be debated and possibly approved.
Democrats criticized the move, claiming that women’s health could be at risk, but lawmakers reassured women that they would not lose access to comprehensive health care.
While any government funding of health care can lead to questions and problems, Iowa’s option is obviously better than funding organizations that perform abortions.
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H/T Life News