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Rachel Maddow Slams Missouri Health Director Who Kept Spreadsheet Of Planned Parenthood Patients’ Periods

L-Photo by Paul Marotta/Getty Images R-North Carolina Channel/YouTube

The politics surrounding Planned Parenthood have reached a fever pitch.

The Missouri state health director, Dr. Randall Williams—a pro-birth Republican, testified that he ordered the state’s main inspector to keep a spreadsheet of the menstruation cycles of the women who visited Planned Parenthood so he could “attempt to keep a record of patients who’d undergone failed abortions.”

Rachel Maddow has come forward to spread the news and to comment on the exact levels of corruption and lines this action have crossed.

The spreadsheet reportedly included “medical identification numbers, dates of medical procedures and the gestational ages of fetuses” of the patients at Planned Parenthood.

Meanwhile, Williams, an OBGYN, is facing calls by the Missouri House and Senate to be put under immediate investigation by the governor.

“State law requires the health department director to be ‘of recognized character and integrity,’” state Rep. Crystal Quade, D-Springfield, said.

“This unsettling behavior calls into question whether Doctor Williams meets that high standard.”

It’s also really bad science.

Women and their menstrual cycles are not standardized. Some women menstruate more than once in a 28 day cycle. Some can go months or years without a cycle due to health reasons like thyroid disease or PCOS.

Shouldn’t an Ob/Gyn know something about, well, gynecology?

In addition, Williams instituted a policy earlier this year requiring physicians to perform a second pelvic exam before receiving a surgical abortion, which Planned Parenthood has deemed “invasive” and “medically unnecessary.”

“Missouri politicians have gone too far. This is government overreach at its worst,” said Yamelsie Rodriguez, president of Reproductive Health Services of Planned Parenthood in St. Louis.

The hearing at which Williams testified this information is one being conducted by the state to determine whether or not Planned Parenthood should be able to keep its license. When is the hearing to see if Williams can keep his?

For now, the clinic remains open.

The Period Power: A Manifesto for the Menstrual Movement is available here.

“Throughout history, periods have been hidden from the public. They’re taboo. They’re embarrassing. They’re ‘gross’.”

“And due to a crumbling or nonexistent national sex ed program, they are misunderstood. Because of these stigmas, a status quo has been established to exclude people who menstruate from the seat at the decision-making table, creating discriminations like the tampon tax, medicines that favor male biology, and more.”

“Period Power aims to explain what menstruation is, shed light on the stigmas and resulting biases, and create a strategy to end the silence and prompt conversation about periods.”

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Written by Mike Walsh

Mike is a writer, dancer, actor, and singer who recently graduated with his MFA from Columbia University. Mike's daily ambitions are to meet new dogs and make new puns on a daily basis. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @mikerowavables.