The most basic function of democracy is the election of legislators who then represent the interests of the people who voted for them. The discourse between constituent and legislator should be the cornerstone of American policymaking. Unfortunately, the Republican Party serves other masters now – a fact which has been obvious for some time but was made crystal clear today.
House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) yesterday announced that Republicans would be bundling a Planned Parenthood defunding bill in with their Obamacare repeal. Today, Planned Parenthood activists showed up to Ryan’s office with an 87,000 signature petition protesting the efforts to cripple the beloved reproductive healthcare bill.
Instead of accepting it, the spineless coward had a team of six security guards remove them from the building.
— Planned Parenthood Action (@PPact) January 6, 2017
Planned Parenthood backers tried to deliver 87K petitions to Paul Ryan, urging not to defund. Denied entry. Delivered to nearby Dem office. pic.twitter.com/SS5g7krVpH
— Jennifer Bendery (@jbendery) January 6, 2017
Paul Ryan has demonstrated, for the umpteenth time, that he cares nothing for the American people or what they actually want. He is beholden to the rich religious extremists and the wealthy oligarchs that really run our nation. A poll taken in September 2015 – just a few weeks after the edited video smear campaign was launched – found that Planned Parenthood was still more popular than the NRA or any of the presidential candidates.
Planned Parenthood provides critical reproductive health services to impoverished Americans, and their federal funding is not used for abortions. Ryan’s refusal to accept the signatures of the American citizens he supposedly represents is a clear sign that our democracy is on life support, and the Republicans are to blame.
You may call Speaker Ryan and complain at (202) 225-0600 or his district offices at (608) 752-4050 or (262) 654-1901 or (262) 637-0510.
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.