Martin Bashir | March 14, 2013
>>> from the cattle to cowboy stadium , proud texasens like to dell us everything is bigger in the lone star state . to that list we can now add the rate of teenage pregnancy . yes, according to the most recent statistics, texas led the nation in teen births with 47,751, or an average of 130 each day. despite these desperate numbers, the state's family planning budge has now been slashed by 2/3. more than 50 clinics have closed. estimates show these cuts could result in 24,000 additional births at the cost of over $270 million to taxpayers. never fear, republicans in texas now want to create planned parenthood free zones in public schools referring abstinence is the only advice for family planning . congresswoman johnson is a democrat from texas sevrving her tenth term after becoming the first nurse elected to ocongress. i have a particularly soft spot for nurses because my mother-in-law was a nurse and my wife is a nurse. can you explain to our audience why in the light of the evidence lawmakers in texas would prefer not to teach teenagers about safe sex and contraception and family planning ? why would they do that in the light of being number one for teenage births?
>> no, thank you, martin, for inviting me today. i am very chagrinned at my state. over 25 years ago i tried to carry a bill for sex education . you know, it's so sad, frankly, that we talk about education being half of every problem of getting answers. yet we're trying to stop education in one of the most essential areas of our life. and childbearing. and we can tell that the information is not being done scientifically because of the results. we still get more and more teenage pregnancy .
>> but i still -- ma'am, i don't understand how politicians who struggle to keep their own underwear on, as we know, by reputation and practice, can expect young children simply, and young students simply to embrace abstinence only and will not even allow the education, the sex education , that most developed nations regard as absolutely essential nowadays?
>> well, abstinence is only a very small portion and we wrap that into religion. however, there is a scientific way to teach health practices that can be done in a classroom by a health problemgressal. that's what we need. if we don't do it in the classroom, the kids will get it online or for gossip, because they will get it one way or the other. it seems to me if we can do it professionally, we will make some gains in eliminating teenage pregnancy . we are not going to eliminate sex. we have to make sure that the proper information is in place to eliminate unwanted pregnancies.
>> right. now, governor rick perry has just wrapped up a speech at cpac. as you know, he's been fighting to defund planned parenthood for years. and he's still refusing any federal funds tied to the affordable care act . what does that mean for your constituents on a day-to-day basis?
>> well, it means for my constituents and many, many others throughout the state that women will have no access to health care and health preventative measures. because planned parenthood , where we have no physicians, and in many parts of our state, are physicians who do not take people on medicaid, and we're eliminating that, that get mammography, for prevention, and other tests. and now he's outlawing altogether. we are moving backwards. i thought we were trying to head out of the 18th century , but it appears to me we have some mentality in office now that's going to make us the laughing stalk of the nation.
>> congresswoman johnson from texas . ma'am, thank you very much.
>> thank you very much.