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Elections & Politics

Planned Parenthood Action Fund President Cecile Richards Addresses Democratic National Convention

Contact: Planned Parenthood Action Fund Media Office, 212-261-4433

For Immediate Release: 09.05.12

“Any more help from Mitt Romney, I’m going to have to take in ironing.”
“This year women learned that if we aren’t at the table, we’re on the menu.”
“Thanks to President Obama, being a woman is no longer a pre-existing condition.”

CHARLOTTE, NC — Planned Parenthood Action Fund President Cecile Richards addressed the Democratic National Convention tonight, highlighting that President Obama has done more to advance women's health than any president in history and making crystal clear Mitt Romney's positions on women's health — and the consequences they would have for women nationwide.

“Mr. Romney and Mr. Ryan are campaigning for women’s votes by saying, ‘women need our help.’ This is coming from two men who are committed to ending insurance coverage for birth control. Who would turn women’s healthcare decisions over to our bosses. And who won’t even stand up for equal pay for women. As my grandmother back in Texas would have said, any more help from Mitt Romney, ‘I’m going to have to take in ironing,’” said Richards.
 
The Planned Parenthood Action Fund endorsed President Obama for re-election on May 30, 2012.
 
President Obama understands the health and economic challenges women face — and has fought to address them by expanding health care for women, including access to birth control and cancer screenings without a co-pay; fighting for equal pay for women; and standing up to protect a woman’s ability to make her own personal medical decisions.
  
“On behalf of the millions of mothers, daughters, wives, sisters and friends — Republicans and Democrats — who’ve counted on Planned Parenthood for health care, and in honor of the thousands of doctors and staff at Planned Parenthood health centers all across America, I am proud tonight to support the re-election of President Barack Obama,” said Richards. “President Obama understands women. Thanks to President Obama, being a woman is no longer a pre-existing condition!”

Efforts to eliminate access to birth control, cancer screenings, and basic preventive health services started in Congress 18 months ago and give voters a clear look into the extreme and out-of-touch agenda that Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan and their closest allies would bring to the White House when it comes to women and women’s health.

“This year women learned that if we aren’t at the table, we’re on the menu. So this November, women are organizing, mobilizing and voting for the leaders who fight for us,” Richards said.

Nearly three million patients come to Planned Parenthood health centers every year — not to make a political statement but to get high-quality, affordable health care. Planned Parenthood health centers see more than two million patients for birth control every year, and provide nearly 750,000 breast cancer screenings and more than four million STI tests/treatments. Preventive care and birth control are economic issues for women and families, and supporting family planning is smart fiscal policy for the country.

This is Richards’ second time speaking at the Democratic National Convention. In 2008, she offered the organization’s endorsement of Senator Obama in Denver and in 1988, she was with her mother, former Texas Governor Ann Richards, who told delegates that elections are a battle for “those who know we can do better.”

Yesterday, Richards’ addressed a crowd of nearly 1,000 supporters at a Women are Watching rally for women and women’s health in downtown Charlotte. She was joined by Georgetown Law Center graduate and women's health activist Sandra Fluke; Mayor of Newark, New Jersey, Cory Booker; Congresswoman Gwen Moore (WI-4), and others. You can watch video footage here.

Women are Watching is Planned Parenthood Action Fund’s 2012 campaign to educate women across the country about the unprecedented attacks on women’s health and where candidates stand on pivotal health care issues, empower women to hold anti-women’s health candidates of either party accountable, and work to elect pro-women’s health candidates up and down the ballot.

You can read Richards’ blog post “Dispatch from Charlotte” here.

YOU CAN VIEW THE FULL REMARKS AS PREPARED FOR DELIVERY HERE.

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Planned Parenthood Action Fund is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit membership organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The Action Fund engages in educational and electoral activity, including voter education, grassroots organizing, and legislative advocacy.