Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz is expected to announce former Hewlett Packard executive Carly Fiorina as his running mate on Wednesday, according to New Hampshire news station WMUR — and women’s health organization Planned Parenthood is not happy about it.
In a statement provided to ThinkProgress, Planned Parenthood Action Fund Executive Vice President Dawn Laguens warned that women’s access to birth control, cancer screenings, and abortion services would be diminished under a Cruz/Fiorina administration.
“A Ted Cruz and Carly Fiorina ticket give women in this country nightmares,” Laguens said. “Ted Cruz and Carly Fiorina both want to criminalize abortion and would rather shut down the government than allow low-income women to access birth control and cancer screenings at Planned Parenthood. This agenda is so unpopular that both Cruz and Fiorina resort to blatant, inflammatory lies to legitimize their extreme beliefs. These lies truly threaten women’s access to health care in this country.”
“Together, they form the most loathsome pair in America,” she added.
A Ted Cruz and Carly Fiorina ticket give women in this country nightmares.
Fiorina — herself a former contender for the Republican presidential nomination — was well known during her campaign for her fierce opposition to abortion, and repeated attacks against Planned Parenthood.
During her most talked-about debate performance, Fiorina referenced sting videos made by the anti-abortion group Center for Medical Progress, which alleged Planned Parenthood was involved in a scheme to “sell baby parts.”
Fiorina said those videos showed Planned Parenthood was keeping an aborted fetus alive to “harvest its brain.” Fact-checking websites, however, countered that this was untrue. The people who produced the sting videos were eventually indicted.
Still, Fiorina’s stance on abortion aligns well with Cruz, who has long tried to make the case that he’s the most pro-life candidate. Cruz has made numerous attempts to make it harder for women to have abortions, including attempts to defund Planned Parenthood; to require women under 18 to notify their parents before having an abortion; and to prohibit “partial-birth abortion,” a procedure used to terminate a late-term pregnancy.
Cruz has also received the endorsement of Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, a Christian group that fiercely opposes abortion. Perkins is currently leading a coalition called “Pro-Lifers for Cruz.”
The report that Cruz will choose Fiorina as his vice presidential pick came soon after the former Hewlett Packard executive was spotted by news cameras in Indianapolis, Indiana. Cruz is currently campaigning in Indiana, which will hold its primary election on May 3.
Earlier in the day on Tuesday, Cruz said he had a “major announcement” planned for the afternoon.
Announcing Fiorina as his vice presidential choice would certainly be major. No presidential candidate has yet indicated who their running mate may be should they win their party’s nomination, much less given a concrete choice.
Fiorina, who dropped out of the presidential race in February, formally endorsed Cruz in March. Though she was critical of Cruz during her campaign, she praised him as a “fearless fighter for our constitutional rights,” and an outsider who wouldn’t “cower” to “the status-quo political class.”
The Cruz and Fiorina campaigns were linked before Fiorina suspended her presidential campaign. In 2015, Cruz’s super PACs gave $500,000 to Carly Fiorina’s super PAC. Fiorina relied heavily on her super PAC to finance her campaign.
In the delegate race, Cruz is currently trailing Trump by almost 400. They two men are locked in a tight battle for Indiana, with Trump currently leading polls by about six points.