Wendy Davis: PP Is About Women ‘Creating Autonomy and Success for Themselves’

‘My personal story is a great example of that’

O`DONNELL: “Well, Wendy Davis, the polls indicate that Planned Parenthood is as popular now as it was before this controversy erupted over fetal tissue research. And you`ve had the experience in Texas, obviously, of talking to absolutist abortion opponents about issues like this. Is there -- is there anything you found in conversations with them as legislators that give some kind of hint of how you could come to some forms of -- some kind of agreement over an issue like Planned Parenthood?”

DAVIS: “I wish I could say that we found that middle ground here in Texas, but unfortunately, we`ve seen the opposite. And it ought not be the case. It ought to be the case that we can agree that even if we agree to disagree on abortion, which, of course, as I said earlier is a constitutionally protected right. Even if we agree to disagree about our personal positions on that issue, we 
ought to be able to agree. That the unbelievably, valuable health services that Planned Parenthood 
provides, as 97 percent of what it does; the contraceptive care, the sexually transmitted disease, screenings that they do. The cancer screenings that they provide. We ought to be able to agree that low income women ought to have a place where they can access that care. And like Congresswoman Duckworth, I and so many women across this country could tell you that at some point in our lives, accessing care at Planned Parenthood was very important for us. I think the real issue here is making sure that people understand the connection between the contraceptive care that Planned Parenthood provides and women`s opportunity to create economic autonomy and success for themselves. And my personal story certainly is a great example of that. Had it not been for Planned Parenthood when I was a young teenage mother who was solely responsible for raising a child at a very young age, had it not been for the contraceptive care that I received at Planned Parenthood, I would not have been able to stay on my college education path and lift myself up and out of poverty. There are so many women in this country today who could tell that story. And it`s why this fight is so very important. This isn`t about Cecile Richards, it`s not about Planned Parenthood, it`s about a war on the very healthcare services that will provide women an opportunity to be autonomous and to take care of themselves and their 
families. And we have to make sure and fight to assure that they continue to have access to the services that they need to do that.”

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