This endorsement is huge news because Planned Parenthood endorsed Margo Davidson last time around, but now they’re backing her challenger Billy Smith.
Davidson has clearly spoiled her relationship with PP. She supported Act 122 -a Republican TRAP bill that shuttered 5 safe and legal abortion clinics. Before the vote, Davidson called claims that the bill would shutter abortion clinics a “conspiracy theory.”
She also voted for HB 818, which effectively banned private insurers from selling private insurance plans that cover abortion on the new health insurance exchanges. Here’s a refresher of what we were saying about that bill during the time it was being debated:
Evil as the Hyde Amendment is, it’s important for everyone to understand that this is not the Hyde Amendment, it is much more extreme. This is about effectively banning women from buying private insurance coverage for abortion. After 2014, the health exchanges are basically going to be the only game in town for people to buy individual health insurance plans. Buying an insurance plan outside of the exchanges is going to be like traveling north of The Wall. But that’s the only place that private insurance plans covering abortion will be sold.
This is a super safe Democratic district. There’s no excuse for Democrats – especially Democratic women – to be voting like central PA Republican men on women’s health and privacy issues.
Full press release after the jump
Planned Parenthood Pennsylvania PAC Announces Endorsement of Billy Smith
Harrisburg, PA: Planned Parenthood Pennsylvania PAC announces its endorsement of Billy Smith in the race for House District 164. The Planned Parenthood Pennsylvania PAC is the electoral arm of Planned Parenthood in Pennsylvania.
“The Planned Parenthood Pennsylvania PAC is thrilled to announce its endorsement of Billy Smith for Representative,” said Sari Stevens, Executive Director of Planned Parenthood Pennsylvania Advocates and PAC. “Billy is a strong advocate for women’s health and rights, and will fight for women’s access to birth control, preventive health care, and reproductive rights in the Legislature.”
The Pennsylvania legislature continues to introduce legislation that threatens Pennsylvanian women’s access to healthcare. A true advocate in the 164thHouse District in Pennsylvania would help to ensure that women continue to have access to a full range of reproductive health services, including abortion services.
“We are extremely disappointed by current 164th District Representative Margo Davidson’s votes on SB 732 and HB 818,” said Stevens. “We have faced unprecedented attacks here in Pennsylvania straight out of the Tea Party playbook, and Representative Davidson voted for two such attacks that are now law in Pennsylvania after being an endorsed candidate in 2010.” SB 732 became Act 122, forcing all surgical abortion providers to become Ambulatory Surgical Facilities (ASFs), limiting access to safe, legal abortion in Pennsylvania, and causing facilities to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars for no reason related to improving patient safety. HB 818 became Act 13, banning individuals from purchasing insurance coverage of abortion services with their own private dollars through the new Health Care Exchanges, even in a medical emergency.
“Given the relentless attacks we continue to see, it is clear that we need true advocates for women’s health in Harrisburg, and we are confident that Billy is exactly the kind of candidate we need.” said Stevens.