The GOP’s mission to control women’s bodies continues, most recently with an announcement by the Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan. “Planned Parenthood legislation would be in our reconciliation bill,” Ryan stated last week during a news conference. If the GOP gets its way, Obamacare will be repealed, Planned Parenthood defunded, and millions of women and low-income Americans left without coverage, all before the end of January 2017.
Immediately following this statement, Planned Parenthood and its supporters fired back. The House Speaker’s office was bombarded by phone calls, and many voiced their concerns and outrage on social media. The day after the announcement, Planned Parenthood supporters hand-delivered over 80,000 signed petitions to Paul Ryan’s office.
The protests are not isolated to those outside the government, though. Wisconsin congresswoman Gwen Moore is a strong supporter of Planned Parenthood. She has been a consistent activist for both the pro-choice movement and women’s rights for years.
In response to Ryan, Moore tweeted out:
There are people in Washington who pose a direct threat to the GOP’s plans. President Obama has made a rule meant to thwart Mr. Trump’s predicted efforts against Planned Parenthood through a ban on states denying federal funds to the organization. While this will not stop the GOP, as Mr. Trump is able to rescind the rule as president, it will at least make the process more difficult.
Another potential complication to the GOP’s plans comes from directly within the Senate. Senator Collins, a pro-choice senator, spoke out in response to Speaker Ryan’s statement. “Obviously, I’m not happy to hear the speaker wants to include defunding of Planned Parenthood, an extremely controversial issue in the package.” Trump’s bill depends on the backing of 50 of the 52 GOP Senators, but the Planned Parenthood defunding aspect of the bill threatens the support of Collins and the other pro-choice senator.
The fight is far from over. While the GOP continues its attempts to strip women of certain rights, there is an ever-strengthening countermovement to protect those rights. To learn more about how Planned Parenthood is taking action, see their website here.