Senator’s Amendment Would Permanently Support Tax-Funded Abortion Abroad
by Steven Ertelt
August 2, 2010
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Late Friday, pro-abortion Sen. Frank Lautenberg slipped an amendment into the foreign appropriations bill that would make permanent President Barack Obama’s overturning of the Mexico City Policy. That’s the rule that stops tax dollars from going to groups that promote and perform abortions overseas.
In January, Obama overturned the policy during his first week in office and opened the door to abortion businesses like Planned Parenthood receiving a share of $457 million designed to help impoverished nations.
The Appropriations Committee voted 18-12 to accept Lautenberg’s proposal to make Obama’s pro-abortion decision permanent.
If the bill becomes law with his provision attached, a pro-life president would not be able to reinstate the Mexico City Policy and protect taxpayers from funding abortions and abortion promotion. Congress would have to go back and pass a bill repealing the Lautenberg provision and a president would have to sign that bill into law.
The Senate State, Foreign Operations Appropriations bill also has another concern for pro-life advocates.
The legislation funnels millions more taxpayer dollars to groups like the United Nations Family Planning Fund (UNFPA), which has worked hand-in-hand with the population control officials in China who have enforced the nation’s one-child policy with forced abortions and other human rights abuses.
On top of the $55 million to UNFPA, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) — the same agency that’s potentially illegally funding organizations lobbying to legalize abortion in Kenya’s new constitution — would get a $24 million raise.
Sen. Sam Brownback, a pro-life Kansas lawmakers, joined other Republicans on the panel in voting against the Lautenberg measure and expressed his frustration with it.
"It’s us funding abortions overseas," he said. "There are a lot of people in the country that find this deeply offensive."
Tony Perkins, the president of the Family research Council, responded to the developments noting: "While the House was busy introducing a bill to ban abortion funding, one Senate committee was passing a bill to permanently expand it."
"Under his language, the Mexico City Policy — which blocks our government from giving financial aid to any overseas group that promotes abortion — would be completely abolished," he said. "[It] would make overseas abortion funding a steady fixture of U.S. spending."
Lautenberg’s amendment is making it so pro-life lawmakers and groups will likely vigorously oppose the Senate State Department bill. The amendment could trigger a filibuster in the Senate over the bill and pro-life organizations will likely pull out all the stops to urge it be defeated unless the pro-abortion amendment is removed.
A February 2009 Gallup poll found strong majority of Americans are upset that Obama would send their tax money overseas to perform and promote abortions.
It found 58 percent of Americans opposed Obama’s pro-abortion decision while just 35 percent supported it and 7 percent had no opinion.
Breaking down the new poll further, Gallup asked respondents to state their opinion on seven major actions President Obama has taken since becoming president. Overturning the Mexico City Policy engendered more opposition than any of the other actions and it had the lowest level of support.
The pro-abortion move also evoked the least support from Democrats and the most opposition from Republicans and independents.
While 59 percent of Democrats supported the move, it came in last among the seven total issues on which Gallup surveyed.
Only 8 percent of Republicans backed overturning the limits as did just 33 percent of the independent voters surveyed — with opposition higher about this action than any other Obama has taken a president.
ACTION: Contact your two U.S. senators and urge strong opposition to the Lautenberg amendment against the Mexico City Policy. Urge lawmakers to remove the amendment from the State, Foreign Operations Appropriations bill and to vote against the bill if it is not removed. Go to https://www.Senate.gov for contact information for your senators.
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