Komen reversal on Planned Parenthood funding fails to surprise some

Nancy G Brinker CNA US Catholic news 2 3 12 Susan G. Komen for the Cure CEO and founder Nancy G. Brinker

Susan G. Komen for the Cure announced on the morning of Feb. 3 that it is amending its funding guidelines so that only those organizations under criminal investigation will be excluded, a move that could allow Planned Parenthood funding to be restored.

“I am surprised that it happened so fast, but not that it happened,” nationally syndicated EWTN radio host Teresa Tomeo told CNA.

Tomeo received a significant amount of criticism for holding back her full support of the organization this week but said she is not surprised that breast cancer charity changed their initial decision.

On Feb. 3, Founder and CEO of Komen for the Cure, Nancy Brinker, apologized to “the American public” for the original decision to pull funding from any organization undergoing investigation and said she did not want her charity “marred or affected by politics.”

The new funding guidelines now specify that “disqualifying investigations must be criminal and conclusive in nature and not political.”

Brinker said that her organization was “distressed at the presumption that the changes made to our funding criteria were done for political reasons or to specifically penalize Planned Parenthood. They were not.”

The day before the organization decided to adjust its rules, 26 U.S. senators sent Brinker a letter urging her to reconsider her decision to cut funding to abortion provider Planned Parenthood.

“We earnestly hope that you will put women's health before partisan politics,” the letter signed by 26 Senate Democrats said.

For her part, Tomeo explained that her hesitation to lend full support came partially from Komen's long history with Planned Parenthood as well as the group not recognizing the link between abortion, oral contraception and breast cancer, a position that many medical professionals claim to be one of the most avoidable risks for breast cancer.

Tomeo thinks organizations such as the Breast Cancer Prevention Institute and Abortion/Breast Cancer should have gotten support from those opposed to abortion, before Susan G. Komen. She was disappointed that so many anti-abortion advocates “drank the pink kool-aid” by lending their support to Komen so quickly.

Americans United for Life founder and CEO Charmaine Yoest released a statement in support of Komen's original decision. She said the criticism they received was just a part of Planned Parenthood's “highly partisan” and “scorched-earth strategy” to force their “pro-abortion agenda.”

Americans United for Life's report on Planned Parenthood employees involved in covering up prostitution and human trafficking helped spur the ongoing congressional investigation being led by Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.) into the nation’s largest abortion provider.

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