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Victory! Komen Apologizes, Backs Off Planned Parenthood Defunding

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"Victory! Komen Apologizes, Backs Off Planned Parenthood Defunding"

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Progressive Push Back Fuels Important Victory

In a huge victory for women’s health care and progressive values, the Susan G. Komen Foundation both apologized for its decision to dump Planned Parenthood and said the group would continue to be eligible for grants.  What’s more, Planned Parenthood reported that it raised more than $3 MILLION for its Breast Health Fund in just the last three days, including $250,000 from New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and $100,000 from Lance Armstrong’s LiveStrong.  This tremendous victory came after three days of intense organizing and push back from progressives, particularly using social media.

Progressives stood up to right-wing bullies attacking women’s health care, one of our most important progressive institutions,  and our values — and we won.

ThinkProgress’ Marie Diamond has the details of today’s announcement from Susan G. Komen:

Facing an avalanche of criticism for caving to pressure from anti-abortion activists, Komen founder Nancy Brinker issued the following statement:

We want to apologize to the American public for recent decisions that cast doubt upon our commitment to our mission of saving women’s lives. The events of this week have been deeply unsettling for our supporters, partners and friends and all of us at Susan G. Komen. We have been distressed at the presumption that the changes made to our funding criteria were done for political reasons or to specifically penalize Planned Parenthood. They were not. [...]

We will amend the criteria to make clear that disqualifying investigations must be criminal and conclusive in nature and not political. That is what is right and fair. [...]

Our only goal for our granting process is to support women and families in the fight against breast cancer. Amending our criteria will ensure that politics has no place in our grant process. We will continue to fund existing grants, including those of Planned Parenthood, and preserve their eligibility to apply for future grants, while maintaining the ability of our affiliates to make funding decisions that meet the needs of their communities.

Serious questions remain about the nation’s largest cancer charity, including the hiring of an anti-choice activist for a top policy position and another recent decision to drop funding for embryonic stem cell research.  That said, today’s victory is an important signal to others that progressives won’t stand by and let bullies attack our most important institutions and values.

Evening Brief: Important Stories That You May Have Missed

The Daily Show eviscerates Florida’s new discriminatory drug testing welfare recipients by asking Gov. Rick Scott to pee in a cup.

A state-by-state look at how tax codes significantly favor the wealthiest 1 percent over the poorest 20 percent.

Retribution for a Republican state senator who opposed privatizing Florida’s prisons.

Poorer Americans pay a higher percentage of their income in state taxes than the top 1 percent.

Is John Boehner trying to end funding for public transportation?

Take an inside, uncensored look at the rhetoric of ex-gay activists.

U.S. corporate tax rates have hit their lowest rate — 12.1 percent — since at least 1972.

While Mitt Romney has been waging a war against contraception and accusing the president of waging a “war on religion,” the Boston Globe reports he used to have the same position as the president just a few years ago.

More good news on unemployment: the unemployment rate for returning veterans has dropped a whopping 6 points in the last year.