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This Is What Defunding Planned Parenthood Looks Like

VICE News visited two of Iowa’s closing clinics during their last week to see what it means for staff and patients when politicians force Planned Parenthood to shut its doors.

by Rebecca Grant
Jul 17 2017, 1:53pm

SIOUX FALLS, Iowa—Deb Fegenbush was praying she would win the lottery. The odds were one in 292 million, but the jackpot was $92 million, more than enough to keep the Planned Parenthood clinic she manages in the Morningside neighborhood open.

"I'm never lucky, but I did buy a Powerball ticket today," Fegenbush said from behind her desk in a small makeshift office when I visited last month, on the last day the clinic would see patients before closing for good on June 30. "If I won the lottery, I could continue to help Planned Parenthood."

Sioux City is one of four Planned Parenthood clinics in Iowa that are shutting down after Gov. Terry Branstad signed a bill in May to "defund" the healthcare organization. Dozens of states have introduced similar measures targeting Planned Parenthood in the past couple of years, and a few, like Texas and Missouri, have succeeded. Kicking Planned Parenthood off Medicaid and "defunding" the organization has repeatedly come up in Congress as well. As the Senate lurches toward a vote on repealing the Affordable Care Act, the fight to strip Planned Parenthood of public money remains one of the most divisive.

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