Also in Salon: A good column by Joan Walsh, highlighting Republican Rep. Mike Pence's vow to shut down the federal government rather than continue federal support for Planned Parenthood. The money does not pay for nor subsidize abortion. It pays for vital medical services that many women otherwise couldn't afford. Former President Bill Clinton has stepped in to articulate the issue succinctly:
The assault on Planned Parenthood is unjustified. It is penny-wise and pound foolish. The law strictly and clearly prohibits the use of federal funds for abortion services. The Republicans’ elimination of funding for Planned Parenthood, will in the end cost more than it saves by ending the ability of millions of American women to receive family planning services, breast and cervical cancer screenings and preventative healthcare at cost-efficient Planned Parenthood centers. And the denial of simple birth control and family planning services may well increase both the number of unintended pregnancies and abortions in our country.
Walsh says Republicans are setting up straw men for when they force a government shutdown.
On "Hardball" today, Melissa Harris-Perry explained that in the event of a government shutdown, this lets the GOP scapegoat women, particularly feminists and poor women. It's also about making the lives of poor and working people as miserable as possible.