“We want to apologize to the American public for recent decisions that cast doubt upon our commitment to our mission of saving women’s lives.
The events of this week have been deeply unsettling for our supporters, partners and friends and all of us at Susan G. Komen. We have been distressed at the presumption that the changes made to our funding criteria were done for political reasons or to specifically penalize Planned Parenthood. They were not.
Our original desire was to fulfill our fiduciary duty to our donors by not funding grant applications made by organizations under investigation. We will amend the criteria to make clear that disqualifying investigations must be criminal and conclusive in nature and not political. That is what is right and fair.
Our only goal for our granting process is to support women and families in the fight against breast cancer. Amending our criteria will ensure that politics has no place in our grant process. We will continue to fund existing grants, including those of Planned Parenthood, and preserve their eligibility to apply for future grants, while maintaining the ability of our affiliates to make funding decisions that meet the needs of their communities.”
You know what happened — the CEOs of the corporations sponsoring Komen merchandising deals have been having words with Komen execs.
Update: Personally, I doubt Konen will ever get all the toothpaste back in the tube. This episode is likely to leave a sour taste in a lot of mouths.
Notice that a lot of the backlash came from Komen affiliates. Seriously, women who are activists on women’s health care issues are likely to be pro-choice. Duh, Komen Foundation.
Update: When I heard the news I had just finished reading this interview by Sarah Kliff of Americans United for Life President Charmaine Yoest, whom Kliff argues was a behind-the-scenes influence in the de-funding decision.
Behold the Fail:
Americans United for Life has, for the past year, aggressively pushed Congress to end Planned Parenthood’s federal funding. It has also drafted model legislation that states can use to bar abortion providers from receiving federal funds. Nine states have passed such laws, although the Obama administration has blocked their implementation.
Yoest hopes that the Komen decision is the beginning of a similar push, on the private side, to curtail Planned Parenthood’s funding, although she does not expect other funders to get on board overnight.
“We’ll be looking at their other supporters,” she said. “Let’s be honest, they’ve been very fashionable amongst a certain philanthropic set. I hope that this is a beginning of people re-looking at associations with the nation’s largest abortion provider.”
Probably not, but it might cause people to keep Yoest at arm’s length.
Update: One of the comments coming from right-wingers is that Planned Parenthood doesn’t do mammograms, just referrals. According to a news story by the CBS Pittsburgh affiliate, the referrals also included vouchers to pay for the mammorgrams, and Komen was providing the money that Planned Parenthood was using for the vouchers. So cutting off Planned Parenthood really does amount of cutting off access to mammograms, even if the mammograms are not being done at Planned Parenthood.