New Jersey politicians may force state taxpayers to cough up more money for Planned Parenthood after a new Trump administration policy defunded it of about $60 million this month.
Pro-abortion lawmakers in the state already have $7.5 million budgeted for the abortion chain, but state Senate President Stephen Sweeney wants to do more.
NJ Advance Media reports Sweeney promised Wednesday that he would work to increase Planned Parenthood’s state taxpayer funding as a result of President Donald Trump’s new Title X rule.
The rule prohibits grantees from promoting or performing abortions in the same facility that provides Title X services. It helps to ensure that taxpayer dollars are not indirectly subsidizing abortions. The New Jersey branch of Planned Parenthood and several other state facilities rejected $8.8 million in Title X grants this month because they refused to comply with the rule, according to the local news.
Sweeney claimed that these facilities are “standing on principle” by refusing to give up doing abortions or to separate their abortion businesses from their actual health services.
“Health care is absolutely a right, and we need to ensure the funds and services are there for the population that utilizes it,” the Democratic lawmaker said during a news conference at Planned Parenthood in Trenton. “They’re standing on principle, and they’re standing because they’re right.”
New Jersey is challenging the rule in a lawsuit with 19 other states. However, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently allowed the Trump administration to enforce the rule until the legal challenges are resolved.
Here’s more from the report:
In the meantime, Planned Parenthood’s New Jersey affiliates say they will use emergency funds to make sure no services are affected.
But Sweeney said the state can’t count on the courts and must step in with state money, which would likely be diverted from the more than $1.2 billion surplus in the state budget.
That’s on top of the $7.5 million already in the state budget for Planned Parenthood and similar clinics.
“You can’t let this health care network collapse,” Sweeney said. “We would prefer not to have to do it. It is a federal program. But you have a president that just looks to attack on anything and everything at all times. You’d think he wakes up in the morning and says, ‘What can I do to disrupt more people’s lives?’”
The Democrat-controlled state legislature could vote on the additional funding as soon as September, the report states. Gov. Phil Murphy also is a pro-abortion Democrat.
Prior to Murphy, Republican Gov. Chris Christie defunded Planned Parenthood in the state budget. Planned Parenthood is the largest abortion chain in America, aborting about 330,000 unborn babies every year.
There are many reasons why Christie’s administration defunded Planned Parenthood. Several years ago, the abortion group was found engaging in fraudulent Medicaid activity in New Jersey.
The U.S. Inspector General for the Department of Health and Human Services uncovered a consistent problem with New Jersey-based family planning clinics run by the Planned Parenthood abortion business. A government audit found that they were improperly billing Medicaid for services that did not qualify as family planning.
An initial audit revealed New Jersey improperly received federal reimbursement at the enhanced 90 percent rate for 160,955 prescription drug claims that were billed as family planning, but did not qualify as family planning services. A letter from the Inspector General to New Jersey officials recommended that New Jersey repay $2,219,746 to the federal government.
The state eventually did return the money to the federal government.
As LifeNews reported in March, the Trump administration finalized an administrative rule that would partially defund the Planned Parenthood abortion business and deprive it of as much as $60 million in taxpayer dollars. This action adds to President Trump’s record of defunding the Planned Parenthood abortion company.
Title X funds are supposed to be used to help low-income women and men receive birth control, cancer screenings and other health care services. While the tax money cannot be used to pay for abortions, it indirectly funds Planned Parenthood’s vast abortion business.