Congressman: Include Planned Parenthood Funding Ban in Next CR

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Mar 22, 2011   |   10:43AM   |   Washington, DC

The leading pro-life member of the House says Republicans should include an amendment revoking funding for the Planned Parenthood abortion business in the next continuing resolution, whether it covers the short or long-term.

After Senate Democrats defeated the House-approved long-term continuing resolution that de-funded Planned Parenthood and contained pro-life riders to stop funding abortion or pro-abortion organizations in other instances, House Republicans approved a short-term CR that did not contain those provisions so they can begin negotiations on a second long-term measure. When they finalize that measure or come up with another short-term version, Congressman Chris Smith of New Jersey, the chairman of the Congressional Pro-Life Caucus, wants the provisions reinstated.

“We also need to include the pro-life riders including de-funding Planned Parenthood, which Planned Parenthood alone has done 5 and a half million abortions in their own clinics,” Smith told CNS News. “In 2009 they did over 332,000. That’s a huge loss of children’s lives. They get large amounts–millions of dollars from the federal government.”

Smith added: “There was an amendment that was offered by Mike Pence that would end that subsidy, that grant to these organizations that kill babies. There are also a number of other pro-life riders that we want in there, and we should be willing to fight very hard–I mean, very aggressively and just say ‘look the country is in trouble as never before.'”

But Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid indicated he would reject any House Republican funding bill that yanks Planned Parenthood funding — saying not only no, but “hell no.” President Barack Obama has also said he opposes de-funding Planned Parenthood in the budget bills.

This week, several leading pro-life organizations are calling on Congress to keep pressing forward with efforts to de-fund the $1 billion-dollar Planned Parenthood abortion business, which receives $363 million from federal, state and local government. With statistics showing Planned Parenthood is the biggest abortion business in the nation and that it provides only abortion to almost every pregnant woman who walks in its door, and with videos showing it looking the other way as helpless sexually-trafficked young girls are subjected to abortions after being victimized, pro-life groups say there is little reason to fund the organization.

The buzz on Capitol Hill is that pro-life lawmakers are growing tired of short-term Continuing Resolution bills and are ready to dig in and fight hard for a long-term Continuing Resolution bill that completely defunds Planned Parenthood – which means the next three weeks could determine the direction the debate goes from here.

Leading pro-life groups have also been buttressed by support from more than two dozen fiscally conservative and libertarian groups that normally don’t weigh in on abortion debates but are urging Congress to de-fund Planned Parenthood. They released a letter to members of Congress yesterday asking for just that.

Tony Perkins, of the Family Research Council, also says there is another, new reason, to de-fund Planned Parenthood:

In more than a dozen instances, Planned Parenthood has been caught on tape agreeing to keep sexual abuse a secret.

And they aren’t doing a lot to shake that image in Illinois, where the organization is actively fighting against new reporting requirements for abortion clinics. In response to some of the shocking footage from LiveAction, the Prairie State is trying to tighten up its regulations by clamping down on the abortion industry. Planned Parenthood is not exactly earning back America’s trust by lobbying against the bill, HB 2093, which merely orders clinics to report the sexual abuse of minors. It’s a common sense policy that both parties should be able to support, right? Wrong. Planned Parenthood came out swinging against the bill, arguing that Illinois already has “rigorous reporting requirements.” The local branch said, “Singling out reproductive health providers is not necessary to ensure the safety of Illinois minors.”

Lila Rose’s videos beg to differ. As shocking as Planned Parenthood’s opposition is, it does reveal the organization’s real priorities: profit over protection. Cecile Richards’s group doesn’t want anything standing between it and their clinics’ biggest moneymaker. Planned Parenthood will fight anything that cuts into its revenue–even something as basic as child safety measures. That alone should disqualify them from taxpayer funding.