Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards said Thursday that the organization would continue to fight to receive public funding for its services.
"We will continue to fight to make sure this is a public benefit," Richards said, speaking at a Recode conference in California.
Richards was responding to a question asked by Recode's Kara Swisher about why Planned Parenthood did not raise the money it needed rather than rely on public funding for its family planning services.
About half of Planned Parenthood's budget, $500 million, comes from public funding, primarily through grants that fund contraception, STD testing and cancer screenings. The federal Hyde Amendment prohibits public funding from going toward most abortions, but congressional Republicans have called for restricting family planning funds from going toward any organization that also performs abortions.
Richards said Planned Parenthood would continue to exist even the funding were cut off. She noted that donations have increased but said they could not replace the public healthcare system. She added that Planned Parenthood would have to find a way to make up the $500 million difference or "find other ways to serve people," such as through technology.
"I think we would have to exponentially increase that investment," she said, citing examples such as counseling women about health questions online.