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Scott Walker Issues "Latest in a Long Line of Attacks" on Women's Health

Bills cut millions in funding to Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin

One bill would restrict Planned Parenthood's ability to purchase prescription drugs at reduced costs, costing the organization roughly $4.5 million. (Photo: Charlotte Cooper/flickr/cc)

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker signed into law on Thursday two bills that slash millions in funding for Planned Parenthood, which the organization slammed as "the latest in a long line of attacks" on women's health.

He signed the bills at a faith-based, "abortion alternative" resource center.

"It really is disingenuous to be talking about cuts to healthcare at an organization that provides religious counseling, but no healthcare," Nicole Safar, Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin director of government relations, told the Associated Press.

One bill would restrict the group's ability to purchase prescription drugs at reduced costs, costing the organization roughly $4.5 million. The other would bar the state from providing Title X family planning grant funds to the organization because it provides abortions. That would mean a loss of $3.5 million for the group.

"The move was the latest in a long line of attacks by the Governor and the Republican controlled state Legislature on the health of Wisconsin women and families," the organization said in a statement.

The Journal Sentinel adds:  "The measures come four years after Republicans made other funding cuts to Planned Parenthood, which the group says led to the closure of five rural clinics that provided birth control and health screenings but not abortions."

There's something in the air...

The new laws come less than a month after the 43rd anniversary of Roe v. Wade, when reproductive rights groups highlighted ongoing attacks on the right to an abortion—which, according to polling, go against public sentiment.

"The anti-choice not the majority in this country," stated Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America.

"Seven in 10 Americans support our rights to safe and legal abortion. And we will not be silenced by a small but vocal minority," she said, adding, "The last thing we need is a rubber stamp on the erosion of reproductive rights until they become rights in theory only—inaccessible to millions of American women because of their income level or zipcode."

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