In attempting to make it sound like Planned Parenthood is the only choice in women's healthcare for Medicaid patients in Indiana, the Associated Press's Rick Callahan seems to have missed perhaps the most important point in his article on the defunding of Planned Parenthood in Indiana: Planned Parenthood lost its funding because they are the largest abortion provider in the country, and Indiana taxpayers refused to continue supporting it.
The article opens with a pity-inducing lede that acts as though patients have no healthcare options except Planned Parenthood. But all of the women's health services that Callahan rattles off in his lede - notably, abortion is not among them - are available in hundreds of other Medicaid-friendly clinics in Indiana. So no, Planned Parenthood patients were not "left fending for themselves," as he claims.
As Callahan reports,
Thousands of low-income Planned Parenthood of Indiana patients were left fending for themselves Tuesday to pay for birth control, breast exams, Pap tests and other medical services while a court battle continued over a new state law that eliminated the organization's Medicaid funding.
Abortion doesn't appear in the article until the eighth paragraph, but only then to note the other restrictions in the new Indiana law, not to discuss the hundreds of thousands of abortions Planned Parenthood performs every year.
The article weaves in a series of quotes from Planned Parenthood patients who complain that the defunding of Planned Parenthood is "unfair" and makes them feel like they're "stuck between a rock and a hard place," but again, Callahan ignores the hundreds of health clinics in Indiana where the low-income patients can still use their Medicaid money to receive the birth control, breast exams, and Pap tests that he mentions.
Contrary to Planned Parenthood's claims that low-income women will lose access to health care in Indiana, Governor Mitch Daniels has affirmed that there are 800 Medicaid providers in the counties in which centers related to Planned Parenthood and other abortion businesses stand to lose access to state-directed funding.
There are 231 Medicaid providers in the three counties in which Planned Parenthood currently operates its Indiana abortion clinics."
Callahan also references Planned Parenthood making the argument that its defunding is unconstitutional, but gives no room for the explanation why they are losing their funding. As the author of the amendment, Republican Sen. Scott Schneider said, "If [Planned Parenthood] wants to receive taxpayer money, they can simply stop practicing abortion."
Reading Callahan's "report" on the defunding of Planned Parenthood, though, you'd almost forget that Planned Parenthood is the largest abortion provider in America.