We just sent out the following press release regarding a new report from the Texas Health and Human Services Commission on the state's family planning programs. The report leaves out answers to too many questions, including why the state is still funneling taxpayer dollars to an incompetent, anti-abortion contractor. Read More

We continue our review of the outrageous and offensive things we heard from the right in 2016. The right's wars on women, abortion and sex education continued in full force throughout the year. Let's review some of what we heard from the right on these issues. You can check out previous posts from the Year in Quotes here. Read More

TFNEF Launches Ad Campaign Pushing Back Against Political Attacks on State Health Researchers

The Texas Freedom Network Education Fund today is launching a new statewide campaign confronting Texas politicians who have attacked state health researchers for telling the truth about the negative impact their policies are having on women’s health care. This bold new public engagement strategy, Texas: State of Denial, aims to shed light on the war on women being waged by state politicians.

“For too long, Texans have endured tremendous political interference that has undermined the health of women and eroded access to quality health care across the state,” said TFNEF President Kathy Miller. “Now efforts by politicians to discredit and even silence health researchers represent another shocking betrayal of trust. Texans have a right to know about the harmful consequences of misguided laws their elected officials pass.”

The campaign launch comes after a top Texas health researcher left his job following harsh attacks by state Sen. Jane Nelson, R-Flower Mound, and other state officials for co-authoring a recent study on controversial changes to family planning policies in the state. The study, which was published in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine in February, found that the number of Texas women obtaining… Read More

UPDATE: It appears Sen. Nelson and other anti-abortion Republicans got their pound of flesh. One of the state researchers who was a co-author on the report noted below is stepping down from his job. Here’s the chilling lesson for state workers: politicians don’t want to hear the facts about how their policies are hurting women and families. And when you tell the facts, you could be forced from your job.

***

Texas Republicans apparently don’t like it when facts interfere with their political jihad against abortion and women’s reproductive health care. So now they’re attacking researchers who dare to report those inconvenient facts.

This month a report in the New England Journal of Medicine revealed that Texas saw substantially fewer women obtaining long-acting birth control after the state dropped Planned Parenthood from the state women’s health program in 2013. As an Associated Press story notes, the report’s authors say the drop by about a third in claims for long-acting birth control — such as contraceptive implants, intrauterine devices and contraceptive shots — may explain an increase in births among poor families in Texas.

Republicans and anti-abortion pressure groups have argued that shutting down Planned Parenthood’s participation in the health program has had no negative consequences. Now they’re furious that people can… Read More

Just Texas, a project of the Texas Freedom Network, sent out the following press release today:

Clergy from diverse faith traditions across Texas are calling on Gov. Greg Abbott to stop interfering with the freedom of women to see providers of their choice for health screenings, family planning and other reproductive health care services.

“Women have a moral and legal right to decide for themselves which health care providers they will see,” said the Rev. Valda Jean Combs, an associate minister at Brentwood Baptist Church in Houston. “As faith leaders in our communities, we cannot be silent when politicians interfere with that freedom and risk leaving vulnerable women without access to the basic care they need and deserve.”

Combs is one of more than 50 faith leaders who have signed on to an open letter to Gov. Abbott on the issue. Today’s public release of the letter, which is available here, comes as Gov. Abbott tries to enforce a ban on Medicaid funding for health care services provided at Planned Parenthood clinics. Planned Parenthood has filed a lawsuit challenging the funding ban. An initial hearing in the federal court case is pending.

Gov. Abbott and other… Read More

Chuck Lindell

Texas House gives final approval to SB 1978, known as the Chick-fil-A bill, on 79-64 vote. It returns to Senate to consider amendment that struck a section giving the AG power to sue to enforce the bill. #txlege Background: statesman.com/news/2…