By Dave Andrusko
Hours after approval by the Senate Government Oversight and Reform Committee, the Ohio Senate voted Wednesday to re-route $1.3 million in state funding away from Planned Parenthood to Federally Qualified Health Centers or other community health clinics not involved with abortion.
“There is no reason that the State of Ohio should be in business with the so-called ‘Walmart’ of abortion,” said Stephanie Ranade Krider, executive director of Ohio Right to Life. “When an organization like Planned Parenthood ranks as one of the world’s 50 most lucrative non-profits, the State should seriously reconsider how it is allocating taxpayer dollars. We are grateful for the prudence and compassion of our elected officials in continually leading our state towards a more life-affirming culture.”
Senate President Keith Faber, R-Celina, introduced the bill. “There are more than 200 community health clinics, 124 health districts and 55 free clinics across the state that, while they don’t perform abortions, do provide the necessary healthcare services to women, many of which are located in underserved areas, reaching out to those in need the most,” Faber said.
“This bill is not about women’s health care,” Faber said after the vote, according to reporter Jackie Borchardt. “It’s about whether we’re going to fund an organization that has its senior leadership nationally, who by the way get money from Ohio, who believe it’s good public policy to chop up babies in a way it makes their parts more valuable so they can buy a Lamborghini.”
According to Ohio Right to Life, the Senate Government Oversight and Reform Committee heard testimony from several pro-life legal and medical and women-helping experts:
Casey Mattox, senior counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom, testified that SB 214 is both constitutional and consistent with applicable federal law. Julie Moore, director of operations for Pregnancy Decision Health Centers in Columbus, testified as a representative of Ohio’s vast network of pregnancy help centers that assist women facing unplanned pregnancies. Dr. Kathleen Lutter testified as an OB-GYN physician who has practiced medicine for 31 years.