Please welcome Cecile Richards.
-♪ -(cheering and applause)
-Welcome to the show.-Good to be here.
Uh, you have a lot of fansin the audience.
-A lot of, uh...-(cheering and applause)
-Thanks.-Uh, and I feel like...
I feel like you need fansin the...
-in these...-We'll take everyone we can get.
Yeah, in-in these tar...uh, dark times.
Let's get straight into it.I mean,
it feels like you cannot turnon the news these days,
-uh, especially afterthe Trump, uh, victory -Mm-hmm.
without seeing another storyabout how Paul Ryan
and the Republicans are planningto defund Planned Parenthood.
In fact,I hear that phrase so much,
it soundslike "Defund Planned Parenthood"
is the new nameof the organization.
-Not a bit. -Like, "Welcometo Defund Planned Parenthood."
-Yeah. No. -That's-that'swhat... Are you tired?
No, no, no, not a bit.In fact, I'm energized.
I... It has beenan outpouring of support
for Planned Parenthoodever since Paul Ryan said that.
In fact, I thinkyou can't even get a phone call
into Speaker Ryan's officeanymore, uh,
because of so many folkscalling, concerned.
Um, and we saw, actually,after the election,
at Planned Parenthood,a flood of women calling.
We had a 900% increase in women,
in the first couple of days,trying to get appointments
-to get an IUD,because they were worried -Wow.
about losing their accessto health care.
You-you see this on the ground.
And Planned Parenthoodis providing vital services.
Um, but, at the same time,
it has becomea contentious issue in America.
How do you...how do you balance that world,
between going,"We're a health care provider,"
whilst, at the same time,some people going,
"Yeah, but you're doingwhat we don't want you to do
for some people."
Actually, Planned Parenthoodis more popular
than the entire United StatesCongress, and, so...
(applause and cheering)
And I will say, I think if therewere more members of Congress
who could get pregnant,we wouldn't
be arguing about birth control,uh...
-(applause and cheering)-And so...
I mean, the truth, Trevor, is
that one in five womenin this country have been
to Planned Parenthoodfor healthcare.
We see about two-and-a-halfmillion patients a year.
And what we've been hearing eversince Speaker Ryan said that
-is women and men coming outin droves... -Yeah.
...wanting to supportthe organization,
talk about the care thatthey got at Planned Parenthood.
We're gonna have thousandsof folks, I think,
come to Washington.
In fact, there are so manypeople that wanted to come
and wear a pinkPlanned Parenthood hat,
literally, the factory ran outof pink yarn
that makes the pinkPlanned Parenthood hats.
-Wow.-So, we're seeing
really record amount of supportin the country.
I guess you need that support
because now we're in a position
where we're witnessingthe Republicans
with the majority they needto defund Planned Parenthood.
Um, what's interestingabout the conversations
in and around this is
that Planned Parenthood providesso many more services
than just abortions.
Is this somethingthat doesn't get through,
or is there a wayto create a bit of separation,
or is it a conversation
that cannot reallybe negotiated?
Well, we're really proudat Planned Parenthood
to provide women all of theirreproductive healthcare,
and we always will.
I think thatwhat's really important
to understand is,under the last...
-During the last eight years,with President Obama... -Yeah.
...who was a huge supporterof women's health, uh,
and health care access,and we actually got
birth control coveredfor 55 million women
in this country at no co-pay,including probably
-some folks here in thisaudience. Um... -(cheering)
I actually... you knowit's interesting,
we're at a 30-year low forunintended pregnancy in America,
we're at a historic low forteenage pregnancy in America,
and that's largelybecause women have better access
to family planning.
I would say the American peoplethink that Planned Parenthood
is actually the solution,not the problem.
-(audience whooping) -Uh, andso... Yeah, thank you for that.
so I really do think that it isa matter of folks in Washington
understanding thatwomen's need for health care,
it's not a partisan issue.
And that's what I think womenare so perplexed about,
is why are peopleplaying politics
with women's health carein America?
And, uh, the women who cometo Planned Parenthood,
they're Republicans,they're Democrats,
they're not coming to makea political statement,
they're comingbecause they need high-quality,
affordable health careand that's what we provide.
Let me... let me playdevil's advocate
-for a little bit, then.-(cheering, applause)
you know, some of the argumentsyou hear people making are,
why should the governmenthave to pay...
for a service that many peoplein America don't agree with?
Or why should there beany funding from government
that goes to an organization
that provides anythingthat they don't agree with?
-So could I answer?-Yeah, of course.
Uh, terrific. So, at first it'sreally important to understand
that Planned Parenthood is not aline item in the federal budget.
Right? We just get reimbursed,
like every otherhealth care provider
for providing, uh,family planning services,
cancer screenings,Well-Woman visits,
STI testing and treatment.
And, in fact, federal funding,as you probably know,
-Yes. -does not payfor abortion services.
I think that's wrong.That's a law
that's been in effectfor a long, long time.
But so when Paul Ryan says
we're going to defundPlanned Parenthood,
what it means is, actually, thatmillions of folks who come to us
for preventive carecan no longer come to us--
including thousands of women,actually,
in his home state of Wisconsin.
I actually think that
if you're concerned aboutpreventing unintended pregnancy,
and the need for abortionin this country,
you should triple the fundingfor Planned Parenthood,
-because that's the work...-(cheering and applause)
that's the work we do.
That's-that's the work we do,and look,
I'll give you another example.
I mean, I comefrom the state of Texas
where the politicians havereally run roughshod
over women's healthcare access.
And they-they shutdown dozensof women's healthcare centers.
We saw unintended pregnancyrates go up,
um, and we also saw a doubling
of the maternal mortality ratein Texas.
And particularly amonglow-income women
and women of color who had theleast access to healthcare.
Those are a lot of the womenthat we see
at Planned Parenthood.
And so this is an issueof access to healthcare,
of a, you know, a wide swathof healthcare.
And for many folks we're theironly healthcare provider.
And Paul Ryan is now sayingwe're gonna end that.
When-when-whenthe Republicans say
it's not aboutdenying women healthcare,
it's about getting the moneyto places
where we feelit would be better suited,
so they say it'll go tocommunity healthcare centers.
You know, that still meansthat there are many women
who won't have access to anyform of healthcare at all.
In fact, the communityhealth centers have said
we can't see all these patients
that Planned Parenthood sees.
The Congressional Budget Officehas said
this is gonna cost the taxpayers$130 million at a minimum
if you end women's abilityto go to Planned Parenthood.
-Is that, it that just in thedefunding of... ? -Mm-hmm, yeah.
-'Cause it'll actually costmoney to... -Absolutely.
-to put it all together.-To try to replace it.
-Yes. -And then the otherthing which I think
is an important partof all this,
is it's not onlythat Congress is saying
they're going toend women's ability
to go to Planned Parenthood--and not just women,
we have a lot of men that cometo us and-and young people.
Last night,in the dead of night,
-when we're all asleep, the...-At 1:30 a.m., yup.
Exactly. The United StatesSenate starts ramming though
a repealof the Affordable Care Act,
which means 20 million peoplelose their health care coverage,
it means young people, uh,
that are 26 and-and younger
can no longer stay on their, uh,parent's health insurance plan.
It means people withpre-existing conditions,
uh, can't get, uh,health insurance anymore.
And Kirsten Gillibrand,the great senator
-from the state of New York,uh, w... -(scattered whoops)
Yeah, she's fabulous. I mean,she-she had the senate vote
last night on protecting women'shealth care access, uh,
and the Republican leadershipdefeated that as well.
So I think it's importantto understand it's not only that
they want to end accessto Planned Parenthood, they want
to end access to care for a lotof folks in this country.
Uh, and I believe it's goingto cause a health care crisis.
We saw that it did in Texas,we've seen this happen
in other states.And so I hope that every person
who is watching this, if you'vebeen a Planned Parent patient
or if you care aboutaccess to health care,
you need to call your memberof congress, call your senator,
and-and callthe Trump administration.
I, uh, appreciate your time.I thank you for being here,
and so do many peoplein the audience.
-Thank you so much for coming.-Hey, thanks for having me.
-I really appreciate it.-Cecile Richards, everybody.