Planned Parenthood of Arizona CEO Bryan Howard claims CAP's anti-abortion efforts have turned back the healthcare clock a decade in Arizona, forcing Planned Parenthood to limit some of its services and making women travel farther and endure hardships to get the medical attention they need.

"CAP can frame this any way it wants," Howard tells New Times. "But the practical effect is that it's harder for women in Arizona to get reproductive healthcare than it used to be. That's primarily through CAP's leadership."

Howard says Planned Parenthood's Flagstaff office has seen a 40 percent dip in patients coming from northern counties. The new restrictions caused Planned Parenthood to shutter its Yuma clinic.

CAP has adopted a strategy of incrementally limiting access to abortion, birth control, and prenatal services, says Howard, and it and Cathi Herrod have "legitimized dishonesty" in the legislative process.

"Herrod frames everything in a very disingenuous lens of affecting women's health," he observes.

Herrod's my-way-or-the-highway attitude on abortion and other issues has ticked off Arizona Republicans as well.

Campaign and policy guru Chuck Coughlin helped Jan Brewer get elected in 2010, and in 2012, put together the coalition that successfully passed the governor's Medicaid expansion.

Coughlin accused Herrod of attempting to undermine Medicaid expansion via the effort to refuse federal funds to Planned Parenthood, a move already deemed unconstitutional by the courts.

"I said to Cathi at the time, 'There are some people who are pro-life, like the governor, and there are some people who are anti-abortion, and that's you,'" Coughlin says.

He adds, "CAP's policy is to prohibit abortions — but not to care for those [children] once they are born."


Chuck Coughlin notes that, to some degree, CAP has become the victim of its success.

"We're one of the most anti-abortion states in the country," Coughlin says, "one of the states where it's most difficult to receive an abortion, and that's really [CAP's] agenda.

"Now they're moving into other areas, where it's uncertain ground, where the policy matrix is a bit more complicated."

Such as with SB 1062, which pitted ideology and religion against the economic interests of the state.

Many Republican lawmakers will talk about Herrod and CAP only off the record, for fear of reprisal.

"Herrod has a lot of influence over a lot of elected officials in different levels of government," one GOPer says. "So if you vote 'no' on a bill she wants, you're gonna catch a lot of crap from everyone from [former U.S. Senator] Jon Kyl to [Maricopa County Attorney] Bill Montgomery."

This legislator describes Herrod — a middle-aged woman with two grown children and a law degree from the University of Texas at Austin — as a "true believer who surrounds herself with true believers."

And as you might expect from the leader of a powerful evangelical organization, Herrod is comfortable speaking from a pulpit, citing chapter and verse to the faithful and describing her and CAP's work in biblical language.

In a 2011 video interview with a representative of Focus on the Family's public policy arm CitizenLink.com, she was asked about the role that she and CAP have in the political process.

"As a mother, I am to awake and arise like Deborah in the Old Testament and make a difference," she said, likening herself to one of the judges of Israel.

"We are called to be involved in this work," she added. "We are called to be a salt and a light. [Note: a reference to Jesus Christ's Sermon on the Mount.] We are called to expose the evil deeds of darkness and to stand for righteousness. So I am involved because God called us to this work, and because I'm a mom concerned about my two children."

Says another Republican legislator of Herrod, "The evangelical Christian hook is real. Cross her and you're a heretic, and that gets to become a religiously laden label that carries money and influence."

Particularly in a Republican primary, which depending on how a district is carved, may render the general election contest superfluous.

"Low voter primary turnout dictates that smaller groups can take control of an election cycle," Coughlin says, explaining CAP's influence in the GOP, which he first encountered in the 1990s.

"They were very effective at delivering their voter pamphlets to churches and delivering that constituency based upon a solid record of legislative bills that they've advocated for or against in any given season," Coughlin says.

CAP asks legislators to answer questions concerning morality and legislation, and it publishes the replies. For those who answer incorrectly or not at all, there's hell to pay.

"Their survey really puts you in a box, and then if you don't stay in that box, they'll use it against you," says a GOP legislator. "Like they did against John McCain and Jeff Flake when they voted for the federal Employment Non-Discrimination Act [which protects LGBT citizens from job discrimination]. CAP did a hit piece on them saying, look, they said they would never vote for it — they're liars."

Legislators are rated by their votes on CAP bills in voter guides distributed online, via mail, and in churches. At a fundraiser three years ago, Herrod bragged of distributing 275,000 voter guides in time for Election Day.

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40 comments
budsan
budsan

She seems like a real hatemonger

FJSmith
FJSmith

As a supporter of CAP I feel you have misrepresented CAP starting in your title "Cathi Harrod's Center for Arizona Policy Hates Gays..."  There is no gay bashing done by Cathi or her organization.  On the contrary Christians are asked to love others.  The Bible does say that sex between men is not the way God has intended sex to be.  CAP is not out to hate gays.  They are out to promote a society with strong moral values and liberty for individuals.

DNichols
DNichols

Arizona's SB1070, and SB1062  was passed by legislators belonging to a church that still worships a child molesting  Poligamist leader that had about thirteen wives half of which were under the age of thirteen.

Brewer only vetoed SB1062 out of fear of lost revenues for the State, not for her lack of Hate.

This criminal has coledges in his name and fled justice for his crimes in Illinios.

What a "Saint"

serpico1000
serpico1000

And to think that millions of Dollars are being wasted just to push other people's beliefs down other people's throat, we need to force the Government and Supreme Court to stop allowing all of these religious groups which do not amount but to sect groups, and have a whole bunch of legislators both at State and National levels in their pockets, to push for enactments like these to enable these groups to push the envelope to the maximum and all they do is create doubt, hatred anxiety and anguish, and all for what!! to allow a bunch of politicians to give them a bigger podioum, and to give these religious zealots more freedom to create Havoc??? 

dkessler4
dkessler4

If being religious means that you have to be intolerant and to hate others most people don't want to be part of that.  Our government has to deal with everyone.  This has absolutely no place in our government.

naoma
naoma

I would like "freedom from religion."

naoma
naoma

James777:  I do not Hate anyone -- just feel sorry for the way  "these people"  feel about other human beings.  .  

Artaud49
Artaud49

All you have to do is read the comments below to appreciate the true hate that people like Herrod, Huckabee, and Palin represent and inspire. The insults operate on a 6th grade level, which appears to be the mentality of the people that organizations like the Tea Party and the Center for Az Policy represent.

ancientmath
ancientmath

Apparently Cathi Herrod doesn't understand "religious freedom".  Freedom of religion doesn't equate to freedom to discriminate.  While she is free to practice her religion any way she chooses (go to church, pray, dance with the devil, etc), she, nor anyone else, is not allowed to prevent my religious activities and as an equally-righted American Citizen, I am/will be allowed anywhere in public she chooses to be.  We Americans call this Liberty.

richard.grayson1
richard.grayson1

She can survive and thrive only in a shithole like your state of Arizona. In normal states on the Coast, this woman would be no more paid attention to than a bag lady screaming on the L train or Market Street.

timdlittle
timdlittle

She's a disgusting pig and waste of tax money.

slrman
slrman

As always, when attempting to persecute others in the name of their religion, the religious reich does not shrink from anything, no lie, no matter how stupid, egregious, or hateful is too much.  Nothing is forbidden, no matter how illegal, distasteful, ridiculous, or lacking in human decency is something they will not use joyfully.


Christians are the most judgmental and unforgiving people in the world.

LaMano
LaMano

As you correctly stated, most all of Arizona can ALREADY discriminate against the LGBT community.  SB 1062 would not change that.  So where is all this horrific discrimination NOW?

budsan
budsan

Lets pressure these wacko politicians from the other side. Why can't a groups of sensible, good, sane people of AZ organize. Then like the wackos lead by these Bible freaks find sensible people to oppose these crazy right wing politicians not only in the primary but in the general election as well?  We might be able to get rid of Biggs, Yarbrough, Reagan, Crandell, Kavanagh, Montenegro, Ugenti, DiCiccico, McCain, Franks, Flake and the other embarrassing nuts that now represent AZ. The sane and sensible people of AZ already had success we got rid of Frank Antenori and his clone Ron Gould.

naoma
naoma

Sadly, these people are still out there.  Have they met a gay person?  Spent any time with this person?  And, how about their (the anti-gay group) RELIGION.  Where in their Bible does it mention gay men and women?    I thought there was a "love thy neighbor,"  "judge not lest ye be judged,"  etc.  The way some people spout their religion can be rather disconcerting. No, I have no religion.  But then I have no prejudice nor any hate for anyone who is different.  

rockdog48
rockdog48

Don't hate the player, hate the game!  Gays have the problem but I still interact with them,  professionally.  I choose not to socialize with them because God has claimed that it is wrong.  I believe that is what this lady is all about.  Homey don't play dat!

rhall528
rhall528

@slrman just shows you that there is NO god and they know it or they wouldn't be doing and saying the things they do and say

rhall528
rhall528

@LaMano that's because the party of choice is the nazi fascist party of NO (repugs)

James777
James777

Except, perhaps, for "these people" who are so judgmental, prejudiced and hateful due to their religion?

timdlittle
timdlittle

@rockdog48  gawd claimed it was wrong? so he doesn't have any proof? You theists are whacked out.

slrman
slrman

@rockdog48 Yes, you do hate gays because you use your evil religion to condemn them. 


I choose not to have anything to do with people as willfully ignorant and hypocritical as you are.

splashdoggie
splashdoggie

@rockdog48  I assume you wait by the fireplace each December 25th for Santa as well? There are many books that proclaim Santa exists, even books to tell children to behave or Santa won't visit them. It sounds a little bit like the bible huh?  Be good, follow what we say or you won't be resurrected into heaven. All fairytales and scare tactics, luckily some of us are still rational people.

rhall528
rhall528

@ConcernedCitizenAZ @slrman have never met a good christian and there is NO god never was never will be. ALL RELIGIONS STARTED AS CULTS AND STILL ARE CULTS

slrman
slrman

@ConcernedCitizenAZ @slrman  

I agree.  It's become so bad that "hypocrite" and "christian" are semantically equal.

FYI, there is no evidence that the mythical Jesus  ever existed.

As stated by Dr. Bart Ehrman, Professor of religious studies at the University of North Caroline, Chapel Hill, NC said, "In the entire first Christian century, Jesus is not mentioned  by a single Greek or Roman scholar, politician, philosopher, or poet.  His name never appears in a single inscription, and it is never found in a single piece of private correspondence.  Zero!  Zip references!"


I also have an essay about it at:

http://slrman.wordpress.com/2010/10/17/does-it-matter-if-jesus-existed/


It's not an anti-christ piece but one with which I think you might agree.


Finally, instead of putting christ back into Christmas, how about putting christ back into christians?

rockdog48
rockdog48

@slrman @rockdog48  Well that sure is gonna' cost me some sleep tonight!   Just one less queer to deal with!   

James777
James777

Does your "rationality" ever cause you to question your simplistic views of religion? Does it ever make you wonder, if Christians are merely following such an obvious behavior control system, why are scientists, physicians, artists, highly imaginative and successful entrepreneurs, and many other people who are smarter and more successful than you, followers of such a system?

rockdog48
rockdog48

@splashdoggie @rockdog48  Don't assume anything!  It might cause an overload for that fat ass of yours.  Then the rest of all those fudgepackers wouldn't be able do their thing!

slrman
slrman

@rhall528 @ConcernedCitizenAZ@slrman 

They are mostly very wealthy cults, too.  I read that, if all religions paid taxes like any other business, it would result in 71 Billion dollars of revenue in the USA alone.  I'm not certain about that number, but it would certainly go a long way toward health care and education. 

rhall528
rhall528

@rockdog48 @slrman another nazi fascist party of NO (repugs) follower who likes to spread lies, fear, hate and racism. not worth wasting time on

rockdog48
rockdog48

@slrman @rockdog48  Wah, wah, wah!   Go back to sucking on your bong freak!  Oh, excuse me.  That ain't no bong, that's your boyfriend!

slrman
slrman

@rockdog48 @slrmanThat's right, you stinking coward.  Hide and make insults that you know you won't have to back up.  What a disgusting, craven PoS you are.


Like most christians, you're a liar, coward, hypocrite, and fool.

splashdoggie
splashdoggie

@James777 If it were a true statement that many scientists, physicians, and artists did follow Christianity then yes it would make me wonder. The fact is most physicians and scientists believe in evolution, hence the basis of their career so no I don't ever wonder about that.

rockdog48
rockdog48

@splashdoggie @rockdog48  One thing about Christians: we don't claim to be perfect.  Unlijke you self righteous libtards.   But if it comes down to it,  I'll drop you where you stand!  That sissy boy,  is one thing that you can take to the bank....!

 
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