Planned Parenthood leader says Komen relationship restored

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by BRAD WATSON

WFAA

Posted on February 16, 2012 at 9:07 PM

DALLAS - As President Obama backed off his mandate for religious institutions to offer birth control to employees through their health insurance, he veered away from the original advice given by Planned Parenthood and its president, Cecile Richards.

In an interview Thursday for Inside Texas Politics, Richards was asked about what Planned Parenthood wanted and the ultimate compromise accepted by the president.

"No, I'm just trying to say, I think it's a very respectful compromise to say, in fact, women should be able to get birth control regardless of where they work," Richards said. "With this exception, which is a very broad exception for churches, because what we do know is that basically, all women use birth control."

The scope of Planned Parenthood's support for the mandate comes just weeks after another high profile controversy.  That's when Susan G. Komen for the Cure dropped and then restored the possibility of future funding.

Richards says she's confident of Komen funding ahead.

"I have been very encouraged from talking with our folks on the ground, because again where most of this work takes place is at the health center level," Richards said.

With courts upholding Texas' new sonogram law before an abortion, Richards says that's not what people want.

She calls the law intrusive.

"What we now have in Texas, is the state legislature telling doctors how to perform medicine," she said.

But pro-life groups, Governor Rick Perry and a majority of the legislature, that included Republicans and some Democrats, supported the bill. Backers say the sonogram law is a way to give women more information before an abortion.

Richards was in Dallas for a Planned Parenthood luncheon.

Her entire interview will be on Inside Texas Politics Sunday at 9:00 a.m. on WFAA Channel 8.

E-mail bwatson@wfaa.com

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