Do Wisconsin Republicans on the Joint Finance Committee just pick and chose which parts of the modern era that wish to reside in? In other words do they still opt for their BlackBerry and GPS units at the same time they are consigning women to the back of the bus when it comes to reproductive health care? Do these elected Republicans really scorn the level of modernity over women’s health rights that most of their fellow citizens endorse, and very much enjoy?
It was hard to watch the Planned Parenthood issue get debated in Joint Finance. I have no need to care about conservative constituencies, and certainly no need to wonder if a teabagger is lurking to challenge me come the next election. Yet I wondered why there was a complete lack of awareness among the elected Republicans about the needs, and yes the RIGHTS of women when it comes to reproductive health issues.
When it was over by a party-line vote of 12-4 about $1 million a year had been cut in family planning funding to Planned Parenthood. This was not a good outcome for the state, or for the women these Republicans claim to honor and represent every election cycle.
The damming consequences of the amendment that passed would disallow any abortion providers in Wisconsin, or those affiliated with those that perform abortions or even just make referrals, from receiving a state grant targeted for women’s health programs. In other words funding for women’s health services such as cervical cancer screening, annual exams, or even birth control that is provided by agencies such as Planned Parenthood would be eliminated. The reason is that even if an agency talks about abortion as an option, but the procedure is not actually performed by that agency, funding to that agency would still be eliminated.
That is just plain crazy!
That low-income women in rural districts without health care might not have other options than visiting Planned Parenthood or a similar agency for exams seemed lost on the Republicans. Since the GOP seems averse to national health care I wonder what solutions they favor and are willing to pay for so all women can have their medical needs met?
The average citizen in Wisconsin understands that it is not acceptable for some to still think there is a right to snoop into the private places and dictate what a woman should do with her body. This is 2011, and yet in the Joint Finance room Wednesday I am sure some of the audience were checking their calendars just to be sure. The debate that was underway makes me wonder how someone elected to office can still be so woefully misguided and uneducated about basic issues impacting women.
One of the other aspects to the measure that passed prohibits men from receiving family planning services through a state program! I have no idea why this makes sense to Republicans. Yet it passed. I would think the more accurate and timely information that an agency could provide would only allow for people to make better choices. Those wiser decisions impact all of society in a number of ways from preventing the spread of STD’s to lowering the number of unplanned and unwanted pregnancies.
At the end of the day one questions lingers.
Just what happens to make an otherwise seemingly intelligent legislator come to view Planned Parenthood as the boogeyman?