I just got off a conference call with former Republican and Independent Delegate Katherine Waddell, and former President of the Virginia Federation of Republican Women Jan Schar, responding to yesterday’s Politico article, Ken Cuccinelli suggested Planned Parenthood is racist. As that article reported, Cuccinelli “made reference to Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger, who’s sometimes accused of racist motivations for building clinics in low-income and black areas of the country.”
Actually, Cooch didn’t just make “reference” to Sanger, he specifically endorsed the crazy conspiracy theory regarding “Margaret Sanger’s letters about the Harlem Project, and what she wanted to do,” namely placing “abortion clinics” in African American neighborhoods – for nefarious ends (e.g., “eugenics”). What I find particularly fascinating – and outrageous, unacceptable, crazy, etc. – is how similar Ken Cuccinelli’s rhetoric is to his running mate E.W. Jackson’s, both in terms of the crazy conspiracy theories, and also in suggesting that women’s health care provider Planned Parenthood is somehow a racist organization!
On the conference call, former Delegate Waddell (R/I) decried Cuccinelli’s “dangerous…anti-woman health agenda.” According to Waddell, we haven’t even “scratched the surface of how extreme Ken Cuccinelli is.” She says it make “absolutely no sense to accuse Planned Parenthood of being a racist organization; it’s an organization which brings much needed health care to many.” “But then again,” Waddell added, “nothing about the Republican Party these days makes any sense.” Waddell said she’s “completely embarrassed and mortified by the Republican ticket of Cuccinelli and Jackson,” asking, “What are they thinking?” In Waddell’s view, “This is the worst ticket ever.”
The bottom line, in Waddell’s view, is that Ken Cuccinelli’s and EW Jackson’s “outrageous conspiracy theories about Planned Parenthood…[are] not a mainstream position within the Republican Party, nor is it something that Virginians want their next governor to make a priority.” The problem is, “Cuccinelli and Jackson will leave no stone unturned in their mission to take constitutional rights away from women…even if it means resorting to racially insensitive fear mongering.” In the end, according to Waddell, we “simply cannot and will not allow these men to take control of to the government of Virginia.”
Jan Schar said she was “extremely disappointed that the Republican Party of Virginia has seen fit to nominate three candidates of such extreme ideology…[with] a preoccupation with things that are not important to Virginians on a daily basis.” Schar added that although she’s been a Republican for years, “I simply cannot support them,” as they’d “end a woman’s right to make her own health care choices, including access to birth control.” Even worse, Schar continued, “to think that they’d attack Planned Parenthood, which does so much good for women in Virginia” (e.g., mammograms, cervical cancer checks, “all forms of women’s health care”)…“to call them a racist group is simply beyond the pale and hopefully will frighten Virginians from voting for them.” As with Waddell, Schar warned: “This team of three would take us back to their ideology,” they “won’t leave their political ideology at the front door of the Attorney General’s office…or the Governor’s office.” She concluded that all this “concerns me greatly,” and that “I know so many Republicans who just can’t support [this ticket].”