By Randall K. O’Bannon, Ph.D., National Right to Life Director of Education & Research
So how did one PPFA affiliate celebrate the national organization’s successful effort to protect the hundreds of millions of dollars in federal government subsidies the largest abortion provider in the United States receives every year?
By holding a ribbon cutting facility on a new abortion clinic in Omaha, Nebraska, of course, AND announcing plans to open 12 new clinics in the next five years, part of a $11.5 million capital campaign.
So much for the claim that abortion is a “small” part of Planned Parenthood’s business.
The affiliate making the announcement is Planned Parenthood of the Heartland (PPH). With 25 clinics in Iowa and Nebraska, PPH has been in the news a lot lately. PPH is spearheading a major effort to develop and promote so-called “web-cam abortions” (using the abortifacient RU486) and gobbling up two neighboring PPFA affiliates, one that had not previously offered abortions, another which had only one abortion clinic . The idea is to fatten the financial bottom line by reaching “under-served” women in rural areas.
PPH began offering web-cam abortions in 2008. Under the webcam system, an abortionist, maybe from a clinic in a large urban center, communicates with a woman at a remote location by means of a video conferencing system.
After a brief screening and counseling session, he clicks a mouse and triggers the opening of a drawer from which the woman takes out the two drugs that make up the “RU-486″ chemical abortion regimen: mifepristone and misoprostol.
By January of 2011 sixteen of the PPH’s clinics in Iowa were tied into the webcam system. As of that same date PPH says more than 2,000 women have received webcam abortions.
PPH took over the struggling Planned Parenthood of Nebraska and Council Bluffs affiliate in September 2009 and soon announced plans to build a new abortion clinic in Omaha (Lincoln Journal Star, 6/26/10). That facility opened yesterday, the same day the U.S. Senate was voting 58-42 not to end federal funding of PPFA and 102 named affiliates.
At the ribbon cutting, PPH president Jill June announced that the affiliate would be opening a dozen new clinics in Nebraska and Iowa over the next five years, six in each state (AP, 4/15/11).
In Iowa new clinics are slated for Carter Lake, Clinton, Marshalltown, Mason City, Muscatine, and Ottumwa.
In Nebraska, PPH plans to open clinics in Fremont, Grand Island, Hastings, Kearney, Norfolk, and North Platte.
Except for Grand Island, which in the 2000 Census had a population of 42,940, none of these cities had a population of more than 30,000.
While the clinic in Omaha will be doing abortions, PPH did not say whether they were planning to offer abortion at the new clinics. However they would appear to be prime candidates for the web-cam abortions that PPH has become notorious for.
The planned expansion is part of a $11.5 million capital campaign by the PPH affiliate, which says it already has commitments of $7 million.
Planned Parenthood tries to argue that none of the money it receives from the federal government goes towards abortions. But every dollar they receive to cover their operating expenses enables them to collect and spend money for their other projects.
Like bringing abortion to Omaha, and perhaps in the near future, to a dozen other cities in Nebraska and Iowa.
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