What We're Reading This Morning -- March 12
Good morning everyone! We hope you had a restful weekend (even with daylight savings time and the loss of an hour of sleep). While the Women’s Health Express bus continues its tour around Texas, beginning the day in Houston, we’ll be here holding down the fort and reporting on what’s taking place across the country.
Here’s what we’re reading this morning…
Republicans are women's vote as the battle over basic women’s health care takes the national stage. The Philadelphia Inquirer reports: “Obama gaining among women - thanks to GOP”— “Hard-won Republican gains among female voters have all but evaporated amid a noisy national debate over reproductive health. That opinion shift - if it lasts - could hand a big advantage to President Obama and the Democrats in the fall, political analysts say. In the 2010 midterm elections, the GOP regained control of the House in large part because its candidates ran evenly with Democrats among women, an exception to the ‘gender gap’ pattern that has been a standard feature of U.S. politics for more than three decades.”
Rick Perry vs. Texas women — Perry slashed funds for family planning during the last legislative session. Now he's set on taking away cancer screenings, breast exams, and birth control from the most vulnerable women in Texas. “Health program for poor women at heart of funding face-off between Texas, federal officials” – “The $40 million program is at the center of a faceoff between conservative Republican lawmakers and the federal government, which provides 90 percent of the program’s funding. Although Texas already forbids taxpayer money from going to organizations that provide abortions, the law will cut off clinics with any affiliation to a provider, even if it’s just a shared name, employee or board member…. Plus, more than a dozen facilities that provided health care to poor women recently closed because of budget cuts. Lawmakers last year slashed state funding for women’s health and family planning programs by $73.6 million, cutting services to 160,000 women. They also took $10 million out of a [sic] another family planning budget line and shifted responsibility for providing those services onto the managed care organizations that administer Medicaid in Texas.”
New Hampshire state legislators set to vote on three new anti-women’s health bills in the State House. – “3 abortion bills facing NH House votes” – “Abortion opponents call a bill before New Hampshire’s House “informed consent’’ because it requires women to wait 24 hours and be given information on fetal development, but pro-choice groups say it is insulting to require women to wait and would require biased counseling. The bill is one of three related to abortion that the House is expected to vote on this week. One would ban partial-birth abortions, already prohibited under federal law. Another would change a requirement when a minor seeks permission to have an abortion without notifying her parents. In those cases, a judge must issue a ruling within 48 hours. The bill, a proposed amendment to New Hampshire’s two-month-old parental notification law, would change that requirement to within two court business days.”