Planned Parenthood targets Kasich after New Hampshire win

Planned Parenthood is unleashing paid ads against GOP presidential contender John Kasich, casting him as an anti-abortion extremist who defunded women’s health centers across his home state of Ohio, including a rape crisis center.

The group’s political arm announced its five-figure ad buy on Wednesday, one day after the Ohio governor’s strong second-place finish in New Hampshire, which is raising his profile in the presidential race.

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It’s also the same day that Kasich is expected to sign the Ohio state legislature’s bill to eliminate funding for Planned Parenthood in the state’s budget.

The 30-second ad blasts Kasich for cutting funding for programs that prevent infant mortality and domestic violence prevention initiatives, in addition to breast and cervical cancer screenings – a familiar line against GOP opponents of Planned Parenthood.

Kasich has been clear about his opposition to Planned Parenthood, though the issue of abortion has been a small piece of his campaign, which is geared towards independents and moderates.

Planned Parenthood is attacking Kasich for “quietly” enacting 17 measures to restrict access to reproductive healthcare since he was elected governor in 2010.

The group specifically hits Kasich for defunding a rape crisis center that referred some sexual assault survivors to abortion clinics.

“Kasich is now ready to sign a bill that eliminates infant mortality, domestic violence, and HIV prevention programs --- all in the name of his vindictive campaign to eliminate essential care at Planned Parenthood health centers,” the group wrote in a statement.

Kasich also cut funding for Planned Parenthood in 2013.