New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy signed a bill Thursday forcing taxpayers to pay an additional $9.5 million to the Planned Parenthood abortion chain in their state.
The funding measure came about in defiance of a new Trump administration rule for Title X funds, which requires abortion facilities to stop aborting unborn babies or completely separate their abortion businesses from their health services.
The New Jersey Planned Parenthood affiliates refused to comply with the rule, so pro-abortion state lawmakers decided to give state taxpayer dollars to the abortion chain instead. The $9.5 million is in addition to the $7.5 million budgeted for the abortion chain earlier this year.
“The taxpayers of NJ should not be forced to fund abortion – and make no mistake – that is what this bill will do,” said Marie Tasy, executive director of New Jersey Right to Life. “Abortion is not healthcare. It is an act of violence that that wounds countless women and brutally and painfully takes the lives of so many innocent children.”
Tasy pointed to polls showing that most Americans, even those who support legalized abortion, do not want their tax dollars to pay for abortions. She said Murphy and his fellow pro-abortion Democrat lawmakers did not seek voters’ opinions on the funding bill.
Pro-life Republican Assemblyman Hal Wirths, R-Sussex, also slammed the bill as “immoral and fiscally irresponsible.” He noted that Planned Parenthood chose to refuse the federal funds, according to the local news.
Meanwhile, Planned Parenthood celebrated the additional influx of cash.
“We thank (New Jersey) for taking action to protect New Jersey patients who have been impacted by the Trump-Pence gag rule,” said Kaitlyn Wojtowicz, vice president of public affairs for Planned Parenthood Action Fund of New Jersey.
On Thursday, First Lady Tammy Murphy also criticized the Trump administration for defunding Planned Parenthood as she stood next to her husband, Patch New Jersey reports.
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She claimed the new rule “jeopardizes access to critical health care services such as cancer screenings, sexually transmitted disease testing, affordable birth control, and more for approximately 4 million patients served across the country.”
Though erroneously called a “gag rule,” the new Title X requirement protects American tax dollars from indirectly funding abortions. It ensures that tax dollars are not being used to promote abortions or help perform them by requiring that grantees completely separate their abortion businesses from actual health services or stop doing abortions.
The Title X program provides family planning services for low-income individuals. Nationally, Planned Parenthood gave up about $60 million through the program after the rule was enforced.
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.
Tasy said Planned Parenthood is the only Title X provider in New Jersey that refused to comply with the rule, so the full $9.5 million will go to it.
Meanwhile, women still have access to more than 100 federally qualified health centers throughout the state that provide a full range of health care, including mammograms, prenatal care and other services that Planned Parenthood does not provide.
The abortion chain does not need taxpayer funding, either. Prior to Murphy, Republican Gov. Chris Christie defunded Planned Parenthood in the state budget.
“During the years NJ Planned Parenthood affiliates were not receiving state taxpayer funds, their Annual Reports showed that the entity was more than able to raise its own funds,” Tasy said.
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.
Planned Parenthood is the largest abortion chain in America, aborting about 330,000 unborn babies every year. Its annual report showed a record $1.66 billion in revenue in 2018.
Action: Contact Gov. Phil Murphy to complain about his decision.