With the U.S. Congress on the precipice of stripping away federal funds for Planned Parenthood, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom is asking Californians to sign an open letter opposing the controversial legislation.
True to form, the former San Francisco mayor tweeted out a message to the roughly 1.3 million followers he has on Twitter shortly after the House vote on Friday afternoon.
"House votes to bar Planned Parenthood federal $. Join the movement & call your member of Congress 2day," Newsom wrote on Twitter.
On Friday, the House passed an amendment introduced by Rep.Mike Pence (R-Indiana) to cut federal money for Planned Parenthood, which provides cancer screening, HIV and STD testing as well as birth control to low-income citizens across the nation. The amendment would eliminate up to $330 million for preventative health services offered at Planned Parenthood clinics across the country.
The vote came after Sen. Jackie Speier (D- California) gave a sobering admission to having had her own abortion. "I had a procedure at 17 weeks, pregnant with a child that had moved
from the vagina into the cervix. And that procedure that you just talked
about was a procedure that I endured. I lost a baby," Speier said on the House floor on Friday.
The vote has been a disturbing, yet expected blow for local Planned Parenthood representatives, who pointed out that more than 1 million residents in California rely on the clinic for services. In San Francisco, it would have devastating impacts on the clinic that recently opened in the Mission District.
"We expected this after the latest election, we expected them to use this as an ideological attack," said Heather Estes, CEO of Planned Parenthood Shasta Pacific branch. "They said they were going to focus on job, but instead they are focused on taknig away cancer screening for low-income women."
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