Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush said today in an interview that Congress ought to de-fund the Planned Parenthood abortion business now and, because President Barack Obama refuses to do so, the next president should de-fund Planned Parenthood.
“We should, and the next president should defund Planned Parenthood,” he said, adding that he defunded the abortion giant when he was Florida’s governor.
While Democrats defend Planned Parenthood funding under the false mantra of protecting women’s health, Bush said “there are many extraordinarily fine community health organizations that exist to provide quality care for women on a wide variety of health issues,” without also killing unborn children in abortions and selling their body parts as Planned Parenthood does.
Bush later followed up his comments about de-funding Planned Parenthood with a longer statement.
“With regards to women’s health funding broadly, I believe there are countless community health centers, rural clinics, and other women’s health organizations that need to be fully funded. They provide critical services to all, but particularly low-income women who don’t have the access they need,” he said.
Bush said “we must address the hard-to-fathom $500 million in federal funding that goes to Planned Parenthood – an organization that was callously participating in the unthinkable practice of selling fetal organs. Democrats and Republicans agree we absolutely must defund them and redirect those funds to other women’s health organizations.”
During his time as Florida’s governor, Bush shifted state taxpayer dollars to pregnancy centers that provide women with abortion alternatives.
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In 2005, Bush proposed spending millions on a pregnancy counseling hotline that steered women to these crisis pregnancy centers, which were opposed to abortion. After a $4 million launch, the hotline continued to get $2 million budgeted per year for these services for the rest of Bush’s tenure.
Bush’s position against funding Planned Parenthood has been consistent and an adviser said earlier this year that he supports yanking the abortion giant’s taxpayer dollars
He said he did so “gladly, with pride and conviction” because he wanted “to create a culture of life in our state.” Bush indicated the legislation was necessary because abortion facilities are exempt from regulations that cover physician offices, hospitals and other surgical centers. He said, “This is a simple bill that says women are deserving of the same quality care when they go to a doctor’s office or a hospital or, sadly, to an abortion clinic.”
Additionally, as LifeNews previously reported, Bush recently said he has no regrets on how he handled Terri Schiavo’s case when he was the Governor of Florida. At an event hosted by Saint Anselm College’s Institute of Politics, Bush said, “I don’t think I would have changed anything. I stayed within the constitutional responsibilities or authority that I had. We changed the law first, and a year later it was ruled unconstitutional. Then basically, we didn’t have the ability to do anything. The federal government tried to intervene, and that was also ruled unconstitutional. So she starved to death.”
He concluded, “I feel sad. It was one of the most difficult things I had to go through. It broke my heart that we weren’t successful at sustaining this person’s life, so she could be loved by her mom and dad.”
Dr. Rhonda Meadows issued the following statement regarding Gov. Bush’s record on women’s health. She was the Secretary of AHCA for Gov. Bush in Florida. She is currently a Executive Vice President of Population Health and Providence Health Services and practiced medicine at the Mayo Clinic and is board certified in family medicine.
“As a former Secretary of AHCA for Governor Bush, I watched his dedication to women’s health issues and services first hand. He created and championed the Mary Brogan Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program Act to provide screening, diagnosis, and treatment for breast and cervical cancer, he was intent on improving the quality of care offered to women under our state health programs, and he enhanced access to vital services to women through new access points.”