RealTime: Tancredo Wants Taxpayers to Fund CPC

While Rudy Giuliani, a semi-supporter of reproductive rights, racks up the endorsements and leads in the polls, Tom Tancredo (not to mention Mitt Romney and Ron Paul) continues to sound his anti-choice siren.

On Friday, October 12th, after visiting the Women’s Choice Center in Bettendorf, Colorado, Tom Tancredo told reporters at a news conference that he would de-fund Planned Parenthood health centers around the country if he became President.

The Women’s Choice Center is what is known as a crisis pregnancy center (or “CPC”) – anti-choice agencies that attempt to steer women away from abortions through tactics that have been called “deceitful” and “deceptive” inspiring legislation by Rep. Carolyn Maloney to bar those tactics and a report by Rep. Henry Waxman to analyze the centers’ methods.

But Tancredo had a different take on the center. Because the center offers free sonograms and “other health services to discourage pregnant women from considering abortions”, Tancredo promised to provide support to groups like the Women’s Choice Center.

“As president, I will do everything in my power to support and promote the use of sonograms so that women are informed about their unborn child before making the decision to abort,” he said in a statement.

It is unclear why the use of sonograms or ultrasounds by this particular center seems unique to Tancredo. One would be hard-pressed to find a medical center catering to pregnant women or women who believe they are pregnant without an ultrasound machine. After a positive pregnancy test, a pregnant woman needs an ultrasound not only to help determine how far along she may be but also to ensure the safety and viability of the pregnancy.

A quick look at the Women’s Choice Center’s web site (the facility is located at 2711 Happy Joe Drive – really) tells you that their medical director “will support Level 1 imaging from the 8th thru 18th week of gestation.” But when I called pretending to be pregnant and asking to make an appointment to see a doctor, the woman on the other end of the line seemed incredibly nervous and couldn’t tell me whether or not I’d actually see a physician. She said she’d prefer to schedule me for a pregnancy test first and then she’d refer me to a doctor. When I tried to press on to ask if they had doctors at their center, she evaded the question and said she’d rather take it one step at a time.

Tancredo believes that centers like this one should receive taxpayer funds and not full-fledged health centers like Planned Parenthood that provide medial care to both women and men in the form of: contraception, sexually transmitted infection testing and treatment, pap smears, annual exams, HIV/AIDS tests, pregnancy testing, extensive referrals, education and yes, abortion care. Via The Des Moines Register, Tancredo is reported as saying:

“I think it’s a travesty, the amount of taxpayer money Planned Parenthood gets,” he said. “I would try to stop any type of federal funding for Planned Parenthood.”

Like this story? Your $10 tax-deductible contribution helps support our research, reporting, and analysis.

For more information or to schedule an interview with contact

  • invalid-0

    Ms. Newman…

    This may seem like a small thing, but with so much bad press (uninformed journalists/bloggers, misquotes, downright lies) about Ron Paul, I had to address your nod in his direction.

    Yes, Ron Paul is personally anti-abortion. Since he is an OB/GYN, that position makes sense. But, he believes that abortion is not a federal issue, and falls within the state jurisdiction as it is a matter regarding life, death, et. al. Federal laws were not meant to address such issues, as far as I can tell. Ron Paul thinks that citizens should appeal directly to their state government through their representatives to determine the law regarding abortion in their respective states. Ron Paul has found no Consitutional authority for the federal government to either prohibit abortion or mandate the practice.

    About the specifics of the interview transcript…
    Dr. Paul mumbled something that sounded like, “That’s right…” in the middle of a lengthy statement by the interviewer. How could he know that she would finish her statement with a comment about states doing away with abortion, when he had been talking about jurisdiction all along? I have heard Dr. Paul speak so many times, and I am sure that he was expecting Woodruff to say something like, “and then the states would handle it.”

    Again, Paul’s position is not that each state would do away with abortion. He has no idea what each state would do. That is up to the citizenry. And there are plenty of advocates on each side, to make their cases. If he were a screaming pro-lifer, why would he want 50 seperate fights, instead of one show down in front of a Court that may lean towards “pro-life”?

    If one, with a cool head, reads the full interview, Paul states that he has some reservations about the intricacies of the abortion argument. Remember he is a medical professional in this very area…he speaks from experience. Delivering 4,000 babies, and doing other types of OB/GYN surgery, etc. has given him insight we cannot even comprehend. Dr. Paul is a scientist…and most times he responds from a position based on logic, his studies, practice, experience, and knowledge of the law…not his opinion.

    There is no “anti-choice” siren screaming from the Ron Paul campaign or the Congressman himself. Here is what he does say about health care…

    Dr. Ron Paul is the only Republican candidate that has not been asked about health care issues at a Republican debate… and he is the only physician of the nine… Go figure…

    Thanks so much for your time and attention…and for providing the link for a great Ron Paul interview :)

  • scott-swenson

    Ms. Brydie: Gotta love the passion Ron Paul's supporters have for him, thanks for writing. I also would like to point out your statement, that because Dr. Paul is an ob/gyn, his anti-choice views "make sense."

    You might want to check out Physicians for Choice, an organization chock-full of ob/gyns and other specialists who believe that government should not limit the private health care options of women.

    Congressman Paul is a fascinating candidate for many reasons, but his willingness, as a physician, to let any government; federal, state, or otherwise, interfere with a woman's autonomy does not "make sense."

    Be the change you seek,

    Scott Swenson, Editor

  • invalid-0

    I included Ron Paul in the piece because while pushing this issue to the states maybe taken as “not doing away with abortion”, there is no clear reason to overturn Roe v. Wade. This is a constitutional decision that has strong support across the country – the majority of Americans believe Roe v. Wade should remain. It’s unclear to me why Ron Paul wants to undo what the Supreme Court put in place over thirty years ago? And then what? We know when abortion is criminalized, women die. This is not a pro-choice position – this is a clear siren signaling his opposition to reproductive rights. And, in the interview, Paul explicitly states that he thinks it’s crazy that doctors can be paid to abort babies just minutes before they are born. Well, this is outrageous hyperbole and mischaracterization. 92% of the abortions performed in this country are performed in the first trimester. Approximately 2% of abortions are late term abortions and only in the most extreme of circumstances. Those are procedures performed when the health or life of the mother is in danger as decided by a physician.

    There are many issues that we’d like our candidates to address. Taking away the right to a safe, legal abortion under a federal law only to hand it over to the states need not be at the forefront of our presidential candidate’s discussion.

    I appreciate your reasoned and calm support of Ron Paul. And I understand it. He is quite logical and clear headed on many of the issues. But one need not approach this issue as a scientist to understand the simplicity – women have the right, under Roe v. Wade, to make PRIVATE decisions for themselves and their families as to whether or not they desire to carry a pregnancy to term before viability. I appreciate Paul’s professional credentials but I’m unclear as to how they relate to his position on pushing this issue to the states? There are entire mainstream medical organizations filled with OB/GYNs that support Roe v. Wade, that believe abortion should remain safe and legal because we know when abortion is illegal millions of women die unnecessarily. If Ron Paul wants to take the chance that abortion is criminalized throughout this country, he does not support reproductive rights. And if Paul wants to overturn a 30 year-old decision by the Supreme Court that the majority of Americans still support, it’s unclear how that is smart political strategy?

    Thanks for your comment though and I appreciate your thoughts! I may not agree but I welcome the chance to dialogue.

  • invalid-0

    Thanks so much for your replies and information. While I disagree with you on a few points and with some of your logic, I see no need to go back and forth about it. But please, let me share my thoughts about abortion while I am here visiting your site.

    I am not convinced of a woman’s natural or constitutional right to an abortion, or of the benefits of killing a fetus. My experience with women who have had abortions (they are of many ages, ethnicities, socio-economic backgrounds, and religions, and many of them have had more than one) tells me there is nothing good about abortion. They all regret the surgery and still grieve their decisions. They still count the years and think about the missed first days of school and proms. They all long for the companionship of the children they did not carry to term. They all still have unresolved issues with the fathers. They are all wounded. And no, I am not a member of any pro-life group and have not done any protesting or political action regarding the subject. I am simply a woman, a mother that has talked about it with women I know. I was offered abortion services at a Planned Parenthood clinic several years ago, but I declined.

    In my opinion, abortion is not the answer to the problems pregnant women face. We, you and me and mine, need to change how we treat women and children. Pregnancy seems to be glorified for middle-class and wealthy white women, but frowned upon for women who are the wrong color, the wrong age, speak the wrong language, are the wrong religion, and live on the wrong side of the tracks. All pregnancies are wonderful. Every one. And all children are beautiful–and have great potential to grow up to be beautiful adults.

    If more people like you and me worked to make this a just world for people of every color, age, language, ethnicity, religion, ability, etc. AFTER they are born, then all children would be welcomed. Fix the monetary system, fix the economy, fix the foreign policies that send money to tyrants and keeps poor countries out of the world market. Stop mistreating people that are different than you and give people reasons to want to do well…and they will. Make school mean something…give people access to a great future, and they will go get it. Babies do not stop progress.

    All and all, women must take more responsibility for their bodies before they get pregnant. If a woman can get access to surgery to remove and destroy a fetus, can’t she get access to and education about birth control before becoming impregnated? It seems pretty irresponsible to me. Mothers and fathers have got to talk to their children about sexual matters and give them tools to prevent pregnancy when pregnancy is not desirable.

    I am sure you have a well thought out rebuttal–I expect it, since this seems to be your profession. But no matter how much you pick apart my statements, they still hold true for me. You cannot convince me that abortion is the answer.

    Take care, and let us both hope for the day when all children are wanted and women have no reason to consider abortion an option.