STATEMENT: CAP Action’s Donna Barry Responds to Attacks on Women’s Health in Tonight’s First Republican Debate

Washington, D.C. — Donna Barry, Director of the Women’s Health and Rights Program at the Center for American Progress Action Fund, released the following statement after tonight’s Republican debate highlighted how new rhetoric from GOP candidates cannot overshadow the harmful reality of the impacts of their policies.

Tonight, the Republican presidential candidates tried once again to pull the wool over voters’ eyes when it comes to women’s health. Here are the facts: Planned Parenthood delivers 10.6 million services to men and woman annually, including 400,000 cervical cancer screenings, 500,000 breast exams, and 4.5 million tests and treatments for sexually transmitted infections, among millions of other vital health services including abortion. In Ohio, 28 Planned Parenthood centers deliver quality, affordable health care services to nearly 81,000 Ohioans, many of whom are low-income women and families of color.

If the Republican presidential candidates truly cared about improving women’s health and reducing the number of unplanned pregnancies, increasing access to contraception would be at the heart of their efforts. But as we saw on the debate stage tonight, that wasn’t the case. Instead, we heard more misguided and misinformed attacks on the right of women to get the health care they need.

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