This article first appeared online at Politico on April 4, 2011.
Anti-abortion group touts 2012ers on Planned Parenthood
By: Andy Barr
Looking to show off its influence over the 2012 field early in the game, the anti-abortion group Susan B. Anthony List sent out an email Monday putting each of the leading GOP presidential contenders on record in support of pulling federal funds for Planned Parenthood.
Sarah Palin, Haley Barbour, Mike Huckabee and Tim Pawlenty each provided statements to the group, while the rest of the field was able to point to previous comments making their positions clear.
Both Palin and Pawlenty alluded to the large federal deficit in arguing for why funds for Planned Parenthood should be stripped — as is proposed by Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.).
“I join Rep. Mike Pence and others of conscience and common sense who are leading the charge to end the taxpayer funding of the nation’s largest abortion provider,” said Palin, who is close to SBA List President Marjorie Dannenfelser.
“We recognize that not only is our country buried under Mt. McKinley-sized debt, but that the truest measure of any society is how it treats those who are least able to defend and speak for themselves,” Palin added.
Huckabee made a more emotional plea. “We need to demand this Congress vote to defund Planned Parenthood,” he said. “Our tax dollars should never be used to provide abortions and our government should put an end to it immediately.”
Barbour’s response was simple.
“I support a halt to any federal funds going to America’s largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood,” the Mississippi governor said.
Leaders of SBA List have indicated several times to POLITICO that they intend to play a major role in the 2012 campaign — starting with the group’s sponsoring of one of the few RNC candidate forums ahead of Reince Priebus’s election as chairman in January.
The group spent $11 million during the 2010 cycle and intends to spend more this go-round.