On Thursday, Arkansas lawmakers voted to cut off public funding to abortion businesses like Planned Parenthood and organizations that refer women to abortion providers. The legislation, S.B. 569, passed the Republican controlled House with a vote of 70-8 and now heads to pro-life Governor Asa Hutchinson’s desk.
Thankfully, Arkansas also has a constitutional amendment barring public money from funding abortions, except to save the life of the mother. However, previously abortion businesses in the state received federal grants to be “navigators” under Obamacare. Pro-lifers were opposed to this because they said it indirectly funding of abortion.
As LifeNews previously reported, by choosing Planned Parenthood affiliates to be Navigators in the federally facilitated Exchanges, affiliates had the the seal of approval of the federal government as an entity that consumers can contact for help in applying for coverage. Moreover, HHS listed the Navigators (e.g., Planned Parenthood) in each federally facilitated Exchange on HHS’ official government website as a resource to help consumers.
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Additionally, on March 24th, an Arkansas legislative committee approved a bill that would revise the state’s informed-consent law. The legislation, House Bill 1578, requires abortionists to provide patients with more detailed information on the medical risks that can be associated with abortion. Specifically, the pro-life legislation will increase the waiting period from 24 hours to 48 hours as well as require abortionists to discuss alternatives, health risks and a detailed description of the unborn child to the woman seeking the abortion. The bill also ensures that abortionists describe fetal pain to a women seeking abortions after 20-weeks.
The bill’s sponsor, Robin Lundstrum (R-Springdale) said the changes would help women get quality information. She said, “This bill focuses on a woman’s health, updates the information and helps provide alternatives.” Of course, Planned Parenthood of Arkansaa opposed the measure. A spokeswoman for the abortion business, Angie Heartland, said, “This bill would create barriers for a woman to receive abortion care if or when she has made the deeply personal and often complex decision to end a pregnancy.”
In December,Planned Parenthood Federation of America released its 2013-2014 Annual Report. The report indicated that Planned Parenthood did 327,653 abortions in 2013, an increase over the 327,166 abortions it did in 2012. The “non-profit” also ranked in $305.4 million; and received over a half-billion dollars in taxpayer money, as it took in $540 million in 2012 and $528 million in 2013.
The vice president of American Life League, Jim Sedlak, commented on the new figures. He said, “Despite this lack of increase in its primary business, Planned Parenthood continued to receive over a half-billion dollars in taxpayer money.” Sedlak added. “It has such a tremendous publicity machine that it convinced corporate and private donors to increase donations by more than $75 million (from $315.4 million to $391.8 million).”