In a move that is a first for Planned Parenthood, the Susan G Komen For the Cure organization has announced they are pulling all funding to the healthcare provider. Amid controversy surrounding Congress’ 2011 investigation into the practices of Planned Parenthood, Komen says their organization has a new policy that does not allow them to fund any group under investigation.
In a statement, Planned Parenthood said the Susan G. Komen Foundation had “succumbed to political pressure” from anti-abortion groups in cutting the funding. Komen had begun notifying local Planned Parenthood affiliates that their breast cancer prevention programs will no longer be eligible for new grants from the charity, it said.
Planned Parenthood said Komen had not responded to requests to meet and talk about the decision to cut the funding, which it said had helped thousands of women in rural and underserved communities get breast health education, screenings, and mammogram referrals. But it said the Komen Foundation had been “repeatedly threatened” in recent years by anti-abortion groups upset with its affiliation with Planned Parenthood. This means Planned Parenthood affiliates will not be receiving breast cancer screenings for which Komen has provided for many years. Reuters
Controversy arose in 2011 when House Republicans wanted to pull all government funding to Planned Parenthood, a provider of healthcare services for women unable to afford health insurance. Supporters of the proposed laws that would bar states from providing funds to abortion providers. However, Planned Parenthood has long stood by their record of not accepting government funds for abortions provided to 3% of their patients.
In some ways, the Komen decision isn’t particularly surprising. The group has been under pressure from anti-abortion rights groups not to fund Planned Parenthood. It also hired a vice president last year who had previously advocated for the group’s defunding in her run for Georgia governor. With a congressional investigation underway, Komen pulled its support. And when private institutions move to cut off Planned Parenthood’s funding there’s not much Democrats can do.The only possible backstop here might be pressure from Planned Parenthood supporters pushing back in the opposite direction. Ezra Klein, Washington Post