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Ohio Senate President Kills Bill to De-Fund Planned Parenthood

by Steven Ertelt | Columbus, OH | LifeNews.com | 11/27/12 8:54 PM

State

The president of the Ohio state Senate has killed the bill that would have allowed the state to de-fund the Planned Parenthood abortion business. However, he will be replaced during the next legislative session.

From a report on his decision:

The one-man stop sign is Republican Senate President Tom Niehaus who told reporters Tuesday afternoon that he will shelve both controversial measures for the rest of this legislative session.

Slated to be replaced next year as Senate leader by Sen. Keith Faber, Niehaus told his 23-member Republican majority caucus Tuesday morning about his decision.

“I want to continue our focus on jobs and the economy,” he said. “That’s what people are concerned about.”

Also not moving in the Senate during the lame-duck session is a measure effectively stripping about $2 million in federal funding from Planned Parenthood and other stand-alone family planning clinics, according to Niehaus. If neither bill is passed by the Senate in the next five weeks, they both return to square one when the legislature reconvenes in January for a new session.

“From my perspective, you have to look at the entirety of the work that is done by Planned Parenthood, and I believe that they offer much-needed services that are not offered other places,” Niehaus said.

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The head of the pro-abortion group in the state says she expects the bill to return and for the measure to sail through the legislature on the way to the governor’s office.

The bill would prioritize limited tax funds in the following order: local health departments, community health centers, community action agencies, private primary care providers and Planned Parenthood clinics. The result creates an even playing field enabling other health care centers access to tax dollars that Planned Parenthood monopolizes.

“Planned Parenthood has a monopoly on public funding, but they provide only a fraction of health services to women in Ohio. Local health districts, community health centers and community action agencies provide a vast majority of health care services to low-income and uninsured women and that is where this funding will go,” said Legislative Director, Stephanie Krider, for Ohio Right to Life.

“Ohio women spoke clearly on election night by re-electing every pro-life State Senator in Ohio, increasing majorities for the pro-life Ohio House of Representatives and soundly defeating Issue 2 which was strongly supported by Planned Parenthood and their allies,” continued Krider. “Additionally, in the most competitive congressional race in Ohio, Ohio Right to Life endorsed Congressman Jim Renacci who defeated Planned Parenthood endorsed Congresswoman Betty Sutton. The facts are crystal clear, Ohio is a pro-life state and votes pro-life for our statewide officeholders.”

Susan B. Anthony List president Marjorie Dannenfelser told LifeNews SBA List members in Ohio sent a wave of nearly 3,000 messages encouraging their representatives to support the legislation.

“In one year, Planned Parenthood ended the lives of 329,445 children and ill-served their mothers – that’s not comprehensive whole-woman care no matter how Planned Parenthood executives try to spin it,” she said. “We applaud the undaunted Ohio state representatives who, acting on the will of the pro-life citizens of the Buckeye State, are wasting no time in working to get taxpayers out of the abortion business.  Planned Parenthood and other abortion-centered businesses simply do not need or deserve taxpayer dollars.”

Dannenfelser told LifeNews: “This legislation does not reduce family planning funding by one cent – it simply ensures that taxpayer funding is prioritized to agencies that can best serve the needs of Ohio women.  It is a health care upgrade for women at no additional cost to the taxpayer, and we urge the state legislature to pass this bill.”

Planned Parenthood is the nation’s largest abortion business, performing 329,445 abortions in 2010 alone. In 2010, abortions made up 91 percent of Planned Parenthood’s pregnancy services, while prenatal care and adoption referrals accounted for only 8.6 percent (31,098) and 0.2 percent (841), respectively.  For every adoption referral, Planned Parenthood performed 392 abortions.

Since 2011, 10 states have enacted legislation or have taken administrative action to redirect taxpayer funding away from Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers. An additional four states have introduced legislation.

ACTION: Contact members of the Ohio legislature at http://www.legislature.state.oh.us/ to urge support for the bill.