Nebraska Legislature Passes Budget Defunding Planned Parenthood Abortion Biz

State   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Apr 3, 2018   |   3:39PM   |   Lincoln, Nebraska

Nebraskans soon could have a budget that defunds the abortion chain Planned Parenthood of tax dollars.

The budget passed its final hurdle in the state legislature Tuesday, and now is on its way to Gov. Pete Ricketts, who is pro-life, according to the AP. The final vote was 38-6.

The budget would prohibit Title X family planning funds from going to any group that “performs, assists with the performance of, provides directive counseling in favor of, or refers for abortion.” The budget provision allows Planned Parenthood and other abortion groups to qualify for the funding if they stop aborting unborn babies or encouraging abortions. Groups also may qualify if they completely separate their abortion practices from their health care services.

Lawmakers debated the defunding measure numerous times before they voted on the budget. Nebraska Right to Life praised the legislature for passing the budget with intact pro-life language.

“Nebraska Right to Life is thankful that the majority of the Nebraska Legislature passed LB 944 with pro-life language in the State Budget that impacts Title X funding.” said Julie Schmit-Albin, NRL Executive Director. “The provision ensures that Title X funding for low income Nebraskans is protected while guarding against any illegal melding of Title X funds to support abortion activities.”

“Thanks to all who have contacted their State Senator this Session on multiple occasions to support the pro-life language,” the pro-life group shared online.

A poll conducted in March found strong opposition to taxpayer funding for abortion among Nebraskans, Catholic News Agency reports. According to Public Survey Research, 64 percent of Nebraskans oppose taxpayer funding for abortions, while just 19 percent support it.

In Nebraska, Planned Parenthood receives about $300,000 in Title X taxpayer funding every year, according to the Nebraska Catholic Conference, which supports the legislation.

Gov. Ricketts proposed the measure in his budget earlier this year.

“Nebraska is a pro-life state, so our budget should reflect our values. Any organization can have access to these dollars as long as they don’t provide abortions,” Ricketts said.

Ricketts also praised a law signed by President Donald Trump that makes it easier for states to defund Planned Parenthood and other abortion groups. The law overturned a rule by pro-abortion President Barack Obama forcing states to fund abortion groups.

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In recent years, several states have opted to direct Title X family planning grants to county health departments, community health centers and other types of comprehensive health care providers, in preference to groups engaged in objectionable activities such as Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion business in America.

If the legislation passes, the tax dollars would go to health care entities that provide comprehensive health care but not abortions. At the national level, one survey found that community health centers not only provide more comprehensive health care than Planned Parenthood, excluding abortions, they also outnumber the abortion group’s facilities by 20 to one.