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NARAL Pro-Choice New York on Sarah Palin's speech: "She stands for everything we oppose."

Published September 4, 2008 7:00PM (EDT)

NARAL Pro-Choice New York president Kelli Conlin responds to Sarah Palin's speech:

"Last night Governor Sarah Palin spoke proudly of cutting her state's budget and using her line item veto. What she neglected to mention, however, was that in that role she slashed funding for Alaska's Covenant House, which runs a state program that gives teen mothers skills, training, and a place to live.

"In the often sensationalized conversation about teen pregnancy, the overlooked reality is that women who have a child while in high school are less likely to finish high school and their children are more likely to grow up in poverty and to become teen mothers themselves. While some teens are lucky to have supportive parents, there are many young women who are not able to rely on their families in the event of an unintended pregnancy. These young women need programs and services to support them in their decision to become parents.

"NARAL Pro-Choice New York supports the right of every woman, when faced with an unplanned pregnancy, to make the decision that is right for her. But in order to make any choice free from coercion, a woman must have access to the information and resources she needs to make an informed decision.

"Last night Ms. Palin referred to herself and Senator McCain as agents of change. To our eyes they are not only NOT agents of change but they represent a dangerous continuation of the Bush Administration's anti-woman anti-reproductive health policies. Their ticket supports failed abstinence only until marriage programs and opposes abortion (in Ms. Palin's case, even in cases of rape and incest). Together, they demonstrate a chilling lack of respect for women and a refusal to acknowledge any options other than the ones of which they approve.

"NARAL Pro-Choice New York respects and honors the historic decision to include a woman on the presidential ticket. Unfortunately, Governor Palin is not a candidate we can support as she stands for everything we oppose and opposes everything we stand for."

By Sarah Hepola

Sarah Hepola is the author of the New York Times bestselling memoir, "Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget."

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