State Rep. Patricia Haynes Smith is listed in a full-page ad in the Washington Post among elected officials urging Congress to reject efforts to defund Planned Parenthood.
Smith, a Baton Rouge Democrat, joined more than 60 elected officials from 25 states – all of whom are Catholic – seeking continued federal funding.
On Monday, Smith said Planned Parenthood helps low income women get the health care they need. “It’s about access to health care,” Smith said, of her participation in the ad.
The advertisement was published by Catholics for Choice.
“Congress, It’s Time to Take a Stand,” the ad proclaims.
“Defunding Planned Parenthood would give the least among us even less,” the ad states. “It would rob us of compassionate caregivers and educators. It would punish the most vulnerable, taking away their ability to make reproductive decisions according to their own conscience.”
It also states: “We envision a world …..where the gap between poor women’s and privileged women’s health closes for good.”
Anti-abortion groups have been distributing undercover video allegedly depicting the selling of fetal body parts at some facilities outside Louisiana where abortions are performed. The videos are fueling congressional as well as state level activity against Planned Parenthood, including in Louisiana.
Planned Parenthood has facilities in Baton Rouge and New Orleans neither of which provide abortions. Each offer such things as cancer screenings, sexually transmitted disease testing and treatment, well-woman exams and birth control counseling. A new facility is under construction in New Orleans, with plans to seek state licensing of an abortion clinic.