Pro-Life Group: So-Called Common Ground Bill in Congress Will Increase Abortions

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jul 22, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Pro-Life Group: So-Called Common Ground Bill in Congress Will Increase Abortions

by Steven Ertelt Editor
July 22
, 2009

Washington, DC ( — Though a formerly pro-life Democrat says his common ground bill will lead to a reduction in abortions, a top pro-life group says the so-called common ground measure will increase them. Congressman Tim Ryan of Ohio is behind the disputed measure that will result in more Planned Parenthood funding.

Ryan claims the bill, which has the backing of leading pro-abortion organizations like NARAL, is a common ground measure that will reduce abortions.

But the main component of the legislation is a dramatic increase in the amount of taxpayer dollars that flow from the federal government through the Title X family planning program to the nation’s biggest abortion business.

Family Research Council president Tony Perkins said Ryan’s measure to "reduce the need for abortion" would merely "increase the amount of money given by the taxpayers to abortion providers like Planned Parenthood."

"You don’t reduce something by subsidizing it," Perkins told

"The Ryan bill reminds me of an old saying from the Vietnam era: ‘We will pacify the village by destroying it.’ You can’t say you’ll ‘reduce the need’ for abortion by underwriting its costs," he explained. "When someone offers to pay your way with no strings attached, you’ll take the trip. The same principle applies here."

Perkins says the Ryan bill contains no provisions preventing recipients from promoting or referring patients for abortion. As a result, he says Planned Parenthood will use the funds it receives to encourage the very procedure the bill says it wants to make more rare.

In his response, Perkins also says the Ryan bill also increases support for so-called "emergency contraception" — better known as the morning after pill or Plan B.

Perkins says the pill can act as an abortion drug on occasion and studies and statistics show it does not reduce the number of abortions.

"Increasing the usage of Plan B will increase, not decrease, abortion," Perkins noted.

"In fact, several studies show that increased access to Plan B in Sweden and the United Kingdom has not reduced abortion. The opposite is true, as increased ’emergency contraception’ has encouraged risky sexual behavior, which has led to higher STD rates and abortions," he told

"The Ryan bill also would mandate that Plan B be distributed, with no conscience protections for faith-based or other groups who have moral objections to giving out Plan B," Perkins continued.

At the same time, Perkins lamented that the measure includes no funding for abstinence education programs or actual abortion limits that have been proven to reduce abortions.

"Nothing in the bill would strengthen parental involvement in the decision of minors to have abortion, which is a bipartisan way to reduce abortion among teens. Parental notice laws have been shown to reduce abortion but nothing in this bill would protect parents rights regarding abortion," he says.

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