The “Ohio miracle” is nothing of the sort. The Buckeye State is chronically performing worse than the national average in job creation. Our education department received a scathing review from the state auditor. Our local municipalities and school districts are continuing to hemorrhage employees as they deal with massive state budget cuts.
And our Republican leadership whistles past the graveyard, prioritizing scoring points with the religious right by defunding planned parenthood instead of addressing these issues.
From the Columbus Dispatch:
Gov. John Kasich says the state probably will challenge a federal judge’s ruling that put ahold on an effort to defund Planned Parenthood in Ohio.
“I’m not for funding Planned Parenthood. I haven’t talked to legal counsel, but I assume we’l lappeal,” Kasich told The Dispatch and cleveland.com.
A Cincinnati-based U.S. District Court judge appointed by then-President George W. Bush ordered a temporary halt to the $1.5 million defunding on the day the Kasich-signed measure was to have taken effect last week. The judge wrote that the law would be “depriving thousands of Ohioans of high-quality, affordable health-care services and education programs.”
If you’ll recall, the political impetus for this irresponsible and destructive policy came last summer after the leaking of debunked and highly edited videos from conservative activist David Daleiden got everybody on the right whipped up into a lather.
Instead of acknowledging the ruse, Kasich doubled down on the misguided policy of defunding Planned Parenthood in Ohio.
With even the slightest curiosity on Kasich’s part, and the 10 seconds it takes to look up the story on the World Wide InterWebs, he would know that Daleiden was indicted by a grand jury in Harris County, Texas, on a felony charge of tampering with government records and a misdemeanor charge for emailing an offer to purchase fetal tissue.
With even the slightest intellect, Kasich would’ve known half-a-year ago that the Daleiden videos were just a slice of noxious ratfkery, and that they were heavily manipulated to generate a very specific, exploitable political reaction. And you know what? He did. Of course, he did. And merrily he went along to exploit it to win his own personal, political brownie points.
Daleiden faces a prison sentence of up to 22 years if convicted of crimes alleged by the grand jury and has reportedly turned down plea deals in the case, opting to fight this battle in jury trial.
Nevertheless, and in the face of the judge’s ruling, Kasich says he intends to triple-down and fight on. Well, bully, Don Quixote, because have fun with your go at the windmill because it’s not as though we have anything else in Ohio about which to worry.
Planned Parenthood provides critical access to full medical advice and coverage many low-income men and women could not obtain anywhere else. Their work is hugely important and that cannot be understated.
Their contraceptive services alone prevent unintended pregnancies by the millions every year.
U.S. District Court Judge Michael Barrett seems to be able to grasp these things which Kasich can not.
Barrett wrote in his order that the law would be “depriving thousands of Ohioans of high-quality, affordable health-care services and education programs.” The law “bears no rational relationship to Ohio’s stated interest of favoring childbirth.”
He added, “There is also no doubt that the Ohio legislature enacted (the law) for the purpose of placing a substantial obstacle in the path of a woman seeking to obtain an abortion.”
Now of course the odious Ohio Right to Life group is trotting out the usual old bromides about “activist judges” in the face of their defeat.
“Yet again, an activist judge jumps to Planned Parenthood’s rescue, showcasing the special privilege Planned Parenthood has, even in a state of pro-life voters. Despite the will of the people, Planned Parenthood will continue to feed at the trough of taxpayer dollars for another two weeks,” said ORL President Michael Gonidakis, as quoted by the Dispatch.
Gonidakis’ statement is typical political crock from this sector. How many rhetorical licks does it take to get to the center of this shite popsicle?
1: Activist judge – ad hominem presuming facts not in evidence. This is the former Hamilton County Republican Party Chair who played an integral role in George W. Bush’s victory in Ohio during his re-election campaign. Pure piddle. 2 – “jumps to Planned Parenthood’s rescue” – in other words, issues a ruling to allow for the right for redress through our judicial system, how scandalous!
3 – “special privilege” – phooey. The only special privilege going on here is the special privilege of the monotheistic right to attempt to codify the laws of their Bronze Age God into the public policy of a Republic that expressly forbids the lifting of any religious belief over others. 4 – “A state of pro-life voters” – a gerrymandered state of anti-choice legislators. 5 – “The will of the people” – more phooey; the will of an increasingly hardline, hard right minority political ideology.
David DeWitt is a writer and man of sport and leisure based out of Athens, Ohio. He has also written for Government Executive online, the National Journal’s Hotline, and The New York Observer’s Politicker.com. DeWitt is the Associate Editor of The Athens NEWS. He can be found on Twitter @DC_DeWitt and on Facebook here.