Senators Demand Investigation After Planned Parenthood Caught Taking Coronavirus Relief Funds

National   Micaiah Bilger   May 21, 2020   |   7:07PM    Washington, DC

Republican U.S. Senators sent a letter to Attorney General Bill Barr on Thursday urging him to investigate Planned Parenthood after it received $80 million in coronavirus aid meant for small businesses.

Though it was not supposed to, Planned Parenthood reaped in about $80 million through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) – a coronavirus aid fund meant to help small businesses that are hurting amid the shutdowns.

In the letter, the 27 senators said Planned Parenthood was not eligible for the funds, and the abortion chain knew it.

“These Planned Parenthood entities self-certified eligibility for these loans despite the clear ineligibility under the statutory text …” they wrote. “It was also well-publicized at the time that the CARES Act did not allow Planned Parenthood affiliates to utilize these loans.”

“Most damningly,” the senators pointed to a statement by Planned Parenthood’s own political arm admitting that it could not apply for the aid. In a public statement a few weeks ago, Planned Parenthood slammed lawmakers for giving “the Small Business Administration broad discretion to exclude Planned Parenthood affiliates … under the new small business loan program.”

According to the Christian Post, businesses and nonprofits with more than 500 employees are not eligible for the PPP funds, and Planned Parenthood employs more than that. However, it exploited the funding package by applying through local affiliates that employ fewer than 500 people.

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Here’s more from the report:

The [Small Business Administration] wrote a letter to Planned Parenthood explaining that, in addition to mandatory repayment, “severe penalties” were possible, even criminal or civil sanctions, if the agency determined the group made knowingly false statements in its application.

“There is no ambiguity in the legislation that passed or public record around its passage that organizations such as Planned Parenthood, whose parent organization has close to half a billion dollars in assets, is not eligible for the Paycheck Protection Program,” Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., said in a statement.

Rubio demanded that the billion-dollar abortion chain return the funds immediately, as did the other senators who signed the letter. They included senators from Tennessee, Arkansas, Indiana, Louisiana, Texas, Montana, Wyoming, Iowa, South Carolina, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Georgia, Kentucky, Idaho, South Dakota, Nebraska, Utah and Florida.

“Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion business, tried to defraud taxpayers during the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression,” U.S. Sen. Ben Sasse, of Nebraska, said Wednesday. “The Paycheck Protection Program is supposed to be a lifeline for small businesses, not a slush fund for Big Abortion. The administration needs to reclaim that money and fire the bureaucrats who signed off on this scam.”

On Thursday, however, the abortion giant insisted that it did nothing wrong.

“Like many other local nonprofits and health care providers, some independent Planned Parenthood 501(c)(3) organizations applied for and were awarded loans under the eligibility rules established by the CARES Act and the Small Business Administration (SBA), which they met,” Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s vice president of government relations and public policy, Jacqueline Ayers, said in a statement.

Ayers trashed the Trump administration, claiming this is just another attack on women and Planned Parenthood.

The Trump administration also is demanding Planned Parenthood return the funds, and it may file criminal charges against employees of the abortion giant if they lied on the applications for funding.

Meanwhile, some Planned Parenthood facilities recently advertised being open for “abortion services only” during the pandemic.

Planned Parenthood did nearly 346,000 abortions last year while reaping in $1.6 billion in revenue. It has been accused of discriminating against its pregnant employees, defrauding Medicaid and selling aborted baby body parts.