Thursday, November 15 2012, 05:51 PM CST
Special Report: Fighting for Planned Parenthood
ILLINOIS--The battle to de-fund Planned Parenthood started with newly-elected Governor Mike Pence's pro-life leadership in Indiana.
As a Congressman, Pence introduced legislation three sessions in a row that would prevent any organization that provides abortions from receiving federal dollars.
Fomer State Denate candidate John Bambenek says neighboring Illinois should stand with him.
"Illinois is broke and a lot of times we spend money on things that are not tied to state priorities," said Bambenek.
The director of legislative affairs for Planned Parenthood says if Bambenek looked deeper look into planned parenthood's mission, to provide health care to men and women he would realize it is a top priority.
"For many women we see Planned Parenthood is their only health care provider," said Brigid Leahy.
Bambenek says there are plenty of other outlets for under-insured women in east central Illinois to get health services that aren't politically- based. He says any facility that provides abortion is a left-wing organization and should not receive funding. He says the same should go for right wing oranizations
But Planned Parenthood advocates say he's missing the point.
"Candidates focused on de-funding Planned Parenthood because it can provide abortions, they are really losing site of the value in which it provides health care to people," said Annie Weisner.
Annie Weisner has used Planned Parenthood for its health care services for years. She says during college when she couldn't get into to see the provider available to her through school she turned to Planned Parenthood and got in in less than a week.
She says the family planning services provided through the organization is meant to prevent unwanted pregnancies.
Planned Parenthood's number one goal is to make sure women and men walk out of here safe and healthy.
Several states across the country have already, or are currently working on de-funding Planned Parenthood of millions of dollars.
Supporters hopes Illlinois won't become one of them.
"Health care is important and people need access to it," said Leahy.
Reported By Liz Lohuis