The AHCA, which included a Planned Parenthood defunding provision, tanked. Last week, a Planned Parenthood defunding measure passed the Senate and awaits the President’s signature. Now, pro-life organizations are demanding another Planned Parenthood defunding vote. If you’re not intimately familiar with these battles, your understandable reaction must be what on earth is going on?? Today’s blog post is for you.
Toward the very end of the Obama administration, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) proposed a rule that was widely derided as a parting gift to Planned Parenthood. In essence, it required an outcome in Planned Parenthood’s favor for all of those lawsuits. The negative implications of the rule were numerous, and we outlined them in our official comment while the rule was still pending. Unfortunately, the rule was adopted. But because it was so new, Congress had the opportunity to reverse it under the Congressional Review Act. That’s what the Senate did last week, in legislation spearheaded by Sen. Joni Earnst. Vice President Pence cast the tie-breaking vote.
Last week’s vote to revoke the HHS parting gift basically puts everyone in the position they were in last September with respect to Title X. Still, it’s a significant pro-life victory. It’s also a very strong indication that we have the Senate votes to stop other taxpayer sources of Planned Parenthood funding, which brings me to…
It is time for Congress to re-direct funds away from Planned Parenthood. Instead, fund
community health centers, which outnumber Planned Parenthood facilities by at least 20 to one
and offer a full range of primary health care, unlike Planned Parenthood.
You have a clear path to accomplish this goal. Pass a reconciliation bill that cuts off the
largest funding streams for Planned Parenthood. Reconciliation language to do this already
cleared procedural hurdles in the last Congress. Moreover, Congress has the votes to get it done
now, and President Trump has promised his signature. Now it’s time to act on this opportunity.
The grassroots we represent expect you to stop funding this abortion giant. For years
promises have been made, and the time has come to deliver. We urge you to pass a
reconciliation bill that redirects Planned Parenthood funds to community health centers before
the April recess. There are no excuses for inaction.
Reconciliation is a process available for budget-related bills that bypasses the Senate filibuster. (The AHCA vote, had it been attempted, would have been via reconciliation.) With a filibuster, 60 votes are needed to advance legislation. But without the filibuster, only a majority is needed — and the Title X vote just demonstrated that we have a Senate majority in favor of redirecting Planned Parenthood funding to community health centers.
Planned Parenthood’s days of cruising on the taxpayer dime while killing helpless preborn children may soon be over.