Hillary Clinton: Are you guys ready to win an election? Well, I sure am. I am ready with your help and I am so honored to accept this endorsement of the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, and, as Cecile just said, I have stood with you throughout my life and certainly throughout my career, and I promise you this, as your President, I will always have your back, we will work and fight together.
Now this has been a pretty energetic and even emotional afternoon because you’ve heard so many great advocates, so many people who are on the front lines fighting to preserve women’s rights. I wanna thank some of them. I wanna thank Kelly(sp?), the great MC. I wanna thank Dr. Donna Burkett. I wanna thank Natasha(sp?) from Brooklyn for her story, she’s a patient advocate who has been a patient. I wanna thank Hannah(sp?) from Las Vegas, she’s a student advocate. I wanna thank Crystal(sp?) from right here in New Hampshire who is also a patient and a volunteer, both for Planned Parenthood and my campaign, and I appreciate both.
I also wanna thank the members of Congress, present and future, who are here. Annie Kuster from New Hampshire, Niki Tsongas from Massachusetts, Carol Shea-Porter, former and future member of Congress from right here in New Hampshire. I wanna thank everyone associated with Planned Parenthood, from the Board, to the staff, to the supporters, one and all, and I particularly want to thank your fearless leader, Cecile Richards, and there, there’s a lot about Cecile that I really admire, and among the long list, when Republicans demanded that she testify before Congress, they did not know what they were getting themselves into.
I, I, I know a little bit about this, it’s one of my, one of, one of my common experiences with Cecile because for five hours, Republicans bullied and blustered, Cecile never flinched, she just told them the facts, and, you know, a lot of the Republicans are kind of fact adverse, they didn’t wanna hear any of that, they, they do seem to live in an evidence-free zone, just like the Republican candidates for President, and when it was over, I saw an interview where someone asked Cecile, how did you do it, how did you stay so poised in the face of such breathtaking contempt for women’s health, for women's rights, for women’s dignity, and you know what her answer was?
She said when you’re standing up for what’s right, you keep going, and that’s what, that’s what Planned Parenthood has done for nearly 100 years, it’s certainly what Cecile Richards has done, she comes by that grit and determination from her wonderful mother, who I was privileged to know and I wish Ann Richards would could be here with us for this election. Wouldn’t you love to hear her give Donald Trump and Ted Cruz and the others a piece of her mind? Oh, boy, so would I.
You know, every election is important, but, this one poses such a stark choice and the stakes are so high. In January of 2017, a new President will walk into the Oval Office, America cannot afford for it to be a Republican who will rip away all the progress we have made. You hear them, you hear what they’re saying, out as they joust for position, the same top-down policies that failed and lead to the Great Recession, they don’t even seem to understand what’s going on in the lives of Americans, whether it’s economic policy, or healthcare policy, or foreign policy, they’re so out of touch and out of date.
This year, they succeeded in passing a bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act and to defund Planned Parenthood, and the only thing, as Cecile said, stopping them from making that the law of the land was President Obama’s veto pen and every one of them have promised to sign such a bill and you know what that would mean. When Planned Parenthood is threatened, the health of women, and a lot of men too, all across our country is threatened, just like here in New Hampshire when the Executive Council voted to defund Planned Parenthood.
Without the Affordable Care Act, nearly 19 million Americans now would lose their healthcare coverage, insurance companies would be back in charge, they’d be free to discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions, free to go back to charging women more for our healthcare than men. So, clearly, we cannot let that happen and therefore we need a Democratic nominee who will be able to beat the Republicans and get the job done for Americans. I shudder to think about what the Republicans would do if given the chance.
We know any Republican President would accelerate the assault on access to safe and legal abortion, and think about this, the next President could easily appoint more than one Justice to the Supreme Court, already the Court is getting ready to consider a Texas law that imposes burdensome and medically unnecessary requirements on abortion providers. If these restrictions are allowed to stand, 5.4 million women will be left with just 10 health centers, across that huge expanse of Texas, that provide necessary services and the effects of that decision would rip loud across our country, it’s the biggest challenge to Roe v. Wade in a generation.
The Court will also review another challenge to the Affordable Care Act’s birth control benefit. Remember the Hobby Lobby decision, that made it possible for a women’s employee to limit her healthcare choices? Well, that fight’s not over either. Access to affordable birth control is still hanging in the balance at the Supreme Court. Now, if a Republican wins this election and gets the chance to stack the Supreme Court with right-wing Justices, together, they will accelerate the move to take America in the wrong direction on so many issues that you and I have fought for and that many Americans now take for granted.
They wanna strip away worker’s rights and make it harder to organize, they wanna turn back the clock on voting rights and LGBT rights, they want to further gut campaign finance reform and let billionaires and corporation keep buying our elections. Now, the Republican candidate won’t fight to raise the minimum wage or to do what is necessary to ensure that women finally get equal pay for the work we do, they all want to cut taxes further for the super-rich and get out of the way of corporations. 2015 was the second hottest year on record, but some Republican candidates still deny that climate change even exists. You know what they say, well, I’m not a scientist.
Well, there is an easy answer to that, go talk to a scientist and, you know, it’s, in fact, on all of these issues, I don't know who they spend their time talking to or listening to, honest to goodness, they don’t agree with anything I’m advocating for. Raising the minimum wage, equal pay, combating climate change, raising incomes for working Americans. I see them talking to people, I've concluded that they have this group of actors, they just move from place to place, because nobody ever stands up and says what I hear from the thousands of people that I listen to.
So, you don’t have to take it from me, though, they’re saying it all themselves, they’re telling exactly what they’ll do if they get elected, and you know what, we should believe them. We should believe them because they are so far out in saying what they will do, they will be held to it and some of them even believe it. So, that’s why we have to know exactly where we stand and I want you to know where I stand.
First of all, I will always defend Planned Parenthood, and, and I will say, consistently and proudly, Planned Parenthood should be funded, supported, and appreciated, not undermined, misrepresented, and demonized. I believe, I believe we need to protect access to safe and legal abortion, not just in principle, but in practice. Any right that requires you to take extraordinary measures to access it is no right at all, not when patients and providers have to endure harassment and intimidation just to walk in to a health center, not when, not when making an appointment means taking time off from work, finding child care, and driving halfway across your state, not when providers are required by state law to recite misleading information to women in order to shame and scare them, and not as long as we have laws on the book like the Hyde Amendment making it harder for low-income women to exercise their full rights.
Now, when, when I talk like this, and I do often, Republicans say I'm playing the gender card. Well, if fighting for equal pay, paid leave, and Planned Parenthood is playing the gender card, deal me in.
So, I want you also to know, I will always stand up for access to affordable contraception without interference from politicians or employers. Birth control is basic healthcare and it plays a vital role in the health of millions of women and their families. I waged a fight with my good friend, Senator Patty Murray from Washington, when I was in the Senate, in order to make sure that emergency contraception could be over the counter and we, we waged that battle for years, we held up a Bush appointee to the Food and Drug Administration and we finally won. That’s what I promise you, I will never give up and I will never back off and I will support comprehensive, inclusive sex education, for goodness sakes, people deserve accurate information. I, I I thought we were an open society.
Well, we’re gonna make sure that’s true across the board and I will defend and improve the Affordable Care Act. You may remember, as Cecile said, that when I was First Lady, I fought to give every American access to quality affordable healthcare, and I still have the scars to prove it, and when the insurance companies and the drug companies and their allies blocked our way, I was disappointed but not discourage. I went back to work with leaders on both sides of the aisle to create the Children’s Health Insurance Program to provide coverage and care for eight million children, and two decades later, I was so proud to be part of President Obama’s Administration when he signed the Affordable Care Act into law.
As your President, I will do more to bring down costs for families and to ease burdens on small businesses and make sure consumers have the choices that you deserve. Nobody in America should have to choose between getting healthcare or paying their rent. We can fix this, but only if we elect a President who has what it takes to get the job done for American families, to take on issues as big as the world and as small as your kitchen table. I've been fighting for women and families my entire life. I will go anywhere, anytime, to meet with anyone, and work my heart out to find (inaudible), but I will also stand my ground.
I’m not going to let anyone rip away the progress we’ve made. That’s why Hedge fund billionaires are already running ads against me, that’s why the Koch Brothers are promising to spend whatever it takes to stop me because they know I will defeat their right-wing, top-down agenda that is so bad for America. Now, Donald Trump and Ted Cruz and their powerful friends may be trying to drag us back to the stone age, but we’ve got our sights set on the future because, in spite of the challenges we face, I believe our best days are ahead of us, there’s so much we can do together. Just look at Planned Parenthood, every single day at health centers across America, people are doing extraordinary things together, sometimes under enormous stress and pressure.
When a man, who never should have been allowed to have a gun in the first place, killed three people at Planned Parenthood in Colorado Springs, the community came together to mourn. The very next day, Planned Parenthood staff got up and went to work in Colorado and across the country providing birth control, STD testing, cancer screenings, and, yes, abortion services. Every time a patient called to ask if they could still come in for their appointment, there was only one response, these doors stay open. Those four words, those four words sum up everything you need to know about Planned Parenthood, don’t they? When you’re standing up for what’s right, you keep going.
I was raised by a mother who had a difficult childhood, she was abandoned, mistreated, out on her own as a housemaid by the time she was 14, but she never stopped believing the future could be better, she never stopped being grateful for the second, third, and fourth chances that people gave her in our country, and now I have this amazing 15-month-old granddaughter and I think about her every day, and, of course, I will do whatever I can to make sure she has every opportunity in life. But here’s what I've concluded, now that I'm a member of the grandparents club, that’s not enough.
It really matters what kind of country she grows up in and what kind of world is out there waiting for her. It matters, not just that my grandchild can realize the promise of America, but that every child and grandchild has the same opportunity. Together, together we can have the America that we all believe is possible and I need your help to do that. I need your help starting here in the New Hampshire primary and the Iowa caucus, we can win this election, we can build that better future, and, yes, indeed, a future where a father can tell his daughter, you can be anything you wanna be, including President of the United States. Thank you all very much.