George W. Bush‘s daughter Barbara Pierce Bush effusively praised Planned Parenthood as she headlined a fundraiser for the women’s health nonprofit on Wednesday — and noted its particular importance in the age of President Donald Trump.
“In October when I was asked to speak, I said yes and I was thrilled, but I was under the assumption that history was going to go differently,” said Bush, 35, during her keynote address at Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas’ annual Fort Worth luncheon, according to The Texas Tribune. “That was not meant to be a political statement; I just thought the cards were going to fall in a different way. I’m so happy I said yes because this work could not matter more.”
The former first daughter also expressed her disappointment that the fight to recognize the importance of women’s health is still an issue in 2017.
“To me, Planned Parenthood is a one-stop shop for everything that has to do with women’s health and all social problems that don’t have to do with women’s health,” she said to the audience of about 1,000. “I hope you all realize the incredible investment that you’re making for both women and also their kids, their kids’ education and their income level. And that is unique and incredible. It’s a silver bullet, if you ask me.”
Proceeds from the event will support Planned Parenthood’s preventative healthcare, reproductive and sexual health services for women.
As the Texas Tribune noted, the younger Bush, the CEO and co-founder of Global Health Corps, called Planned Parenthood an “exceptional organization” in a June interview with The New York Times. She also attended a fundraiser for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in Paris in October.
“I am proud to stand with Planned Parenthood not only because women, regardless of where they are from, deserve to live dignified, healthy lives, [but] … because it’s a really good investment,” she reportedly said at the event. “We know that when women are healthy, their families and their children are healthier, too.”
Bush’s advocacy for Planned Parenthood is notable considering her father was staunchly opposed to abortion during his Texas governorship and his presidency.
Bush’s mother, former First Lady Laura Bush, has however voiced support for the legality of abortion on multiple occasions. In 2010, Laura Bush said that abortion should “remain legal, because I think it’s important for people, for medical reasons and other reasons.”
Bush said she was inspired to advocate for global health issues following a trip to East and Central Africa when she was 21.
“Our belief that health is a human right is not reflected in today’s reality,” she said. “Millions of people’s potentials and futures are undermined simply because they do not have access to the health care that they deserve. We have these incredible tools to solve problems, yet health systems are weak, and we need new leaders to fix them.”