PORTLAND, OR, August 8, 2012, ( – As the Obama administration’s HHS birth control mandate took effect at the beginning of this month, abortion providers and their supporters celebrated in the streets.

Michele Stranger Hunter, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Oregon said the date the HHS mandate went into effect, “marks a change, a big huge change, for women all across the country and right here in Oregon.”

The abortion advocacy organization threw a 100-person celebration party on August 1, the date non-religious businesses were required to begin covering contraception, sterilization, and abortion-inducing drugs with no co-pay in their insurance plans. 

Local media reported that Charlie Hales, a Democrat running for mayor of Portland, told the crowd his 25-year-old daughter, Caitlin, remains on his insurance because of Obama’s health reform law and is “happy to access preventive services without any cost sharing and also had access to a safe, legal abortion should she need one.”


Hales said, “I’m proud of Caitlin, and I’m proud that if she makes those choices, she gets to make them.”

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Across the country, in New York state, Upper Hudson Planned Parenthood (UHPP) CEO Patricia McGeown proclaimed she was “thrilled that health care reform will begin to make essential women’s health care services increasingly accessible and affordable for many women.”

The press release noted, “more consumers will start getting the benefit next year,” when the insurance providers of religious employers are forced to furnish such coverage. 

The press release describes this as “a compromise between those who have radically different ideas about how to approach these issues. But the compromise was reached and the nation must move forward.”

McGeown added that Planned Parenthood has a vested interest in the mandate. “Our centers and the nearly 800 Planned Parenthood health centers nationwide will be here for newly insured women who want quality health care from a provider they can trust,” she said. 

The HHS mandate, which is part of the Affordable Care Act or ObamaCare, went into effect August 1 for private businesses. 

Priests for Life, which is designated a non-religious organization, has announced it will not comply
Hercules Industries, a Catholic family HVAC business based in Denver, has successfully obtained a legal injunction against the mandate, pending further legal hearings. 

UHPP capped off its celebration by throwing McGeown a retirement party the next day, August 2.


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