Will Kasich Defund Planned Parenthood in Ohio?

Ohio Gov. John Kasich (photo credit: Marc Nozell via Flickr, CC BY 2.0)

John Kasich has often been billed as a moderate in the GOP race for President.  His views on a number of issues, including Common Core, immigration reform, and the Medicaid expansion authorized by the Affordable Care Act, place him squarely in what the media labels “the center right.”  Left-wing blog Mother Jones, however, makes the case that, whatever Kasich’s view on other matters, he’s an “extremist” on the one issue that really matters to them—abortion:

“Kasich is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. He’s going out there trying to sell himself as a moderate, he’s no moderate. He is an extremist,” says Kellie Copeland, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio, an abortion rights advocacy group. “He is—if not the worst—among the worst of anti-choice governors in this country’s history.”

Since Kasich entered office in 2011, he has enacted 16 anti-abortion measures. Some directly restrict abortion access, such as the 20-week late-term ban that he signed six months after entering office. Others limit the work of abortion providers. For example, in 2013 he signed the state’s budget bill, which included one provision that prohibits state-funded rape crisis counselors from referring women to abortion services and another that stripped Planned Parenthood of an estimated $1.4 million in federal family-planning dollars. The measures have had drastic consequences for access to abortion and medical care for Ohio women: During Kasich’s time in office, the number of abortion providers in the state has dropped from 16 to eight.

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