Last year, Mitt Romney supported a Republican plan to eliminate federal funding to Planned Parenthood — a battle that almost shut down the government. And his support for this idea has not faded. Yesterday, Mitt Romney told a local TV reporter in Missouri that he would “get rid of” Planned Parenthood, among other programs, to reduce the deficit:
The test is pretty simple. Is the program so critical, it’s worth borrowing money from China to pay for it? And on that basis of course you get rid of Obamacare, that’s the easy one. Planned Parenthood, we’re going to get rid of that.
Beyond simply threatening a program that provides necessary health care for millions of women, Romney has also called for cutting funds for Title X — the only federal program devoted to family planning — from the federal budget. The program covers low-income women and men who are uninsured, and without it, about 5 million people would lose their access to health care and contraception.
For Romney, cutting women’s health programs that help millions of women and prevent thousands of unintended pregnancies is a higher deficit-cutting priority than making corporations and high-income Americans pay their fair share in taxes. Romney asserts that the savings for the the federal government by taking away Planned Parenthood funding would be about $300 million. But those savings are the same as the cost of Romney’s tax cuts for 262 of the top 0.1 percent of earners in the U.S.
Romney campaign strategist Eric Fehrnstrom downplayed the Planned Parenthood comments on Tuesday, emphasizing that the candidate was only talking about cutting federal funding. “It would not be getting rid of the organization,” Fehrnstrom told CNN.