More details over at The Tennessean. The grant was funded by the Centers for Disease Control so yeah, Tennessee Republicans are being their usual douchey, reactionary selves:
Two Tennessee Planned Parenthood groups sued the state Thursday for denying the nonprofit more than $150,000 in grant money to participate in programs funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Planned Parenthood wants a federal judge to intervene and asked for an injunction against the state.
In the lawsuit, Planned Parenthood accuses the state of arbitrarily denying the funding in December and this month — without providing a reason — after approving it in August. Planned Parenthood also accuses the state of violating the organization’s First Amendment rights and patients’ rights by restricting access to non-abortion services based solely on an aversion to abortion.
Unrelated to Komen, but today Planned Parenthood filed a federal lawsuit against the State of Tennessee:
News today from Tennessee in the political jihad against Planned Parenthood: The state Health Department has yanked away grants for HIV and STD prevention programs from the nonprofit in Nashville and Memphis, and that’s drawn a federal lawsuit from Planned Parenthood.
Planned Parenthood won the funding last summer in a competitive bidding process. But in December, the state dropped the contracts without giving any reason. According to Planned Parenthood, state officials stopped the services without finding a new provider. As the nonprofit’s Nashville CEO Jeff Teague points out, young women and men are the casualties here.
So, Tennessee’s Republican legislature is so pro-life, they prove it by pulling funding from STD and HIV prevention programs serving poor people. Brilliant!
The bugaboo for conservatives has always, always been that abortion services are just 3% of what Planned Parenthood does. So in their sick, narcissistic way, the right-wing zealots are trying to turn that into 100% by making it absolutely impossible for Planned Parenthood to do anything else. They’re attempting to transform Planned Parenthood into the caricature they’ve always told their cult of followers it is (for an example of that, check the comment thread at the Pith link. There are a couple of doozies.)
And this is the modern “pro-life” position. So lost in the weeds of fundamentalist ideology that they’ve forgotten what they’re supposed to be fighting for in the first place.
I almost feel sorry for these people. Again: this is about one thing, crushing Planned Parenthood. Nothing else. So, to the zealots: don’t delude yourselves into thinking you’re part of some bigger mission or cause. You’re not. You’re trying to put out of business a healthcare provider to poor people. Jesus would not be amused.