(Des Moines, IA) Last week during an event for evangelicals and social conservatives hosted by American Renewal Project, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal encouraged his fellow Republican governors to defund Planned Parenthood.
After the launch of a series of devastating videos linking Planned Parenthood to the sale of body parts from babies that have been aborted in their facilities, Jindal ordered an investigation into the organization’s programs in his state.
Currently Planned Parenthood does not operate abortion clinics in Louisiana but had Medicaid contracts to provide women’s health screenings, etc.
Jindal canceled the contracts which prompted a lawsuit. A federal judge ordered the contracts reinstated and the Jindal administration is currently appealing that decision.
Currently five other states have followed Jindal’s lead: Alabama, Arkansas, New Hampshire, Texas and Utah.
Currently Iowa Governor Terry Branstad, a Republican, has refused to defund Planned Parenthood saying he doesn’t have the legal authority to do so. Branstad, during a gubernatorial debate in 2010, said that he would defund Planned Parenthood.
He has been unwilling to keep his promise.
Jindal had sent Branstad a letter encouraging him to do so, and in response to a question from the audience during the American Renewal Project he encouraged all Republican governors to follow his lead.
Bob Eschliman at Charisma News reports:
Jindal didn’t attack Branstad over the difference of opinion, but did encourage participants to engage their governors. He said it is true that Planned Parenthood would likely sue, and engage in false-information and smear campaigns to put pressure on those governors, but also suggested there is greater strength in solidarity on the life issue.
“There are 34 Republican governors,” he said. “What if they all said, ‘We’re going to defund Planned Parenthood’?”
“The next big test on this issue will be in Congress,” he added. “If the Republican Party can’t stand for innocent life, then what good is the Republican Party?”
Jindal then continued, saying that the “liberal media” will frame the issue as Republicans want to defund government.
“But we’re funding government; we’re just not funding Planned Parenthood,” he finished. “It’s up to the president after that. How come they won’t ask the president, ‘Are you really willing to shut down the government just to continue funding your political allies?'”