WASHINGTON – The abortion-rights group NARAL on Tuesday said Republican Sen. Scott Brown (MA) took "a positive first step" by coming out against his party's efforts to strip Planned Parenthood of family planning funds.

"This past weekend, hundreds of Massachusetts citizens rallied against cuts to the national family-planning program and other attacks that are part of a War on Women coming out of Washington," NARAL's national president Nancy Keenan and Massachusetts executive Andrea Miller said in a statement provided exclusively to Raw Story. "Today's report that Sen. Scott Brown has said he will oppose efforts to defund Planned Parenthood and other family-planning centers is a positive first step, and we look forward to seeing his name appear in the no column when this votes comes to the Senate floor."

"But this is about more than one issue. We also call on Sen. Brown to stand up for the Commonwealth's women and oppose other far-reaching and intrusive anti-choice policies as they move from the House to the Senate," Keenan and Miller added.

Brown, a moderate Republican from a liberal state, supports legalized abortion, but often supports restrictions on it -- including the Hyde Amendment. He has bucked his party leaders on several issues, and says the GOP's bill to defund Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers "goes too far."

"I support family planning and health services for women," Brown said in a statement published Tuesday. "Given our severe budget problems, I don't believe any area of the budget is completely immune from cuts. However, the proposal to eliminate all funding for family planning goes too far. As we continue with our budget negotiations, I hope we can find a compromise that is reasonable and appropriate."