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For nearly eight years, Gov. Chris Christie has wreaked havoc on women’s health in New Jersey.

The anti-women governor slashed funding for reproductive health care services and Planned Parenthood year after year, rejecting a cumulative total of nearly $60 million dollars budgeted for women's health care. He also vetoed a bill that guaranteed equal pay. The health care cuts contributed to a 35 percent increase in STDs. There was also a 5.2 percent increase in breast and cervical cancer, with a 25 percent rise among Latinas.

His Lt. Governor, Kim Guadagno (R) stood by his side the whole time and watched as he dismantled health care for women across the state. Not once did she speak up for women’s health. Now, Guadagno wants to run for Governor.

That’s why this election is so important for New Jerseyans — and women in particular. This Election Day, Garden State voters have the opportunity to elect Phil Murphy (D), a powerful advocate for women’s health and Planned Parenthood. And the opportunity to reject Guadagno’s dangerous policies.

Here’s a breakdown on where the two candidates for New Jersey governor stand on issues that affect you.

Supporting Planned Parenthood

Phil Murphy is a strong, outspoken supporter of Planned Parenthood and its patients. From the day he launched his campaign, Murphy has made it clear that he will work to restore funding for women’s reproductive health care and Planned Parenthood health centers in New Jersey. In fact, he’s said that supporting Planned Parenthood is “literally number one” among his campaign issues.

On the other hand, Kim Guadagno is dangerous for women in New Jersey. Guadagno sat idly by while Chris Christie stripped funding for family planning clinics — including Planned Parenthood health centers — since 2010. And she says that if elected, she will not restore the funding because she does not think taxpayer funds should be used on abortions, even though state-allocated Medicaid funds can be used on abortions in New Jersey. She is not pro-choice when it comes to low-income women. We cannot trust her to protect access to health care.

Safe, legal abortion

Phil Murphy has always made it clear that he stands with Planned Parenthood and that “protecting women’s health care” is of the utmost importance.

But Kim Guadagno? Well, that’s a different story. Guadagno claims to be “pro-choice,” but she clearly has no idea what this means. She wants to continue to strip access to reproductive health care services and wants to see Planned Parenthood “defunded.” We can't trust her to stand up for women.

Sexual health in the Garden State

New Jersey is facing a public health crisis. Since 2009 — the year Christie was elected — the state has seen a 35 percent increase in STDs and a 5.2 percent increase in breast and cervical cancer, with a disproportionate impact on communities of color. That’s why Phil Murphy made it his mission to restore and increase funding for family planning clinics, including Planned Parenthood health centers.

But Kim Guadagno has no plan for women’s public health. Year after year, she remained complicit as Christie stripped nearly $60 million from Planned Parenthood and other family planning services. And a report from the CDC attributed the national increase in STI infections to a retreat from testing and treatment -- it's likely this action worsened New Jersey's health crisis to begin with.

Equal pay

Phil Murphy understands that the gender wage gap is “unacceptable.” New Jersey women continue to earn 80 cents for every dollar a man earns for equal work. As Murphy’s said, ““Chris Christie may be afraid to make ‘equal pay for equal work’ the law, but I’m not.”

Meanwhile, Kim Guadagno did nothing (surprise, surprise) when Chris Christie vetoed a bill that would ban pay discrimination based on gender.

Standing up against GOP attacks

As Republicans in Congress continue to play games with our health care, Phil Murphy is prepared to stand up and protect women’s health across the state. He’s promised to “never put politics ahead of women’s health.” He won’t back down.

But no matter what she says, we can’t trust Kim Guadagno to do the same. Just as she stayed silent for nearly eight years while Chris Christie cut funding for reproductive health care services in New Jersey, she will do nothing to protect Garden Staters against attacks from her fellow Republicans in Congress.

The bottom line

As governor of New Jersey, Phil Murphy will be a staunch supporter of women’s access to health care, including reproductive health care.

Paid for by the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, 123 William St, NY NY 10038.  This expenditure was not made with the cooperation or prior consent of, or in consultation with, or at the request or suggestion of, any candidate, or person or committee acting on behalf of any candidate.

Tags: Election, New Jersey, governor

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