Senator Harry Reid stood on the Senate floor this morning and said Republicans are lying about federal funds being used for abortion, and baldly said no taxpayer monies are funneled to abortion through Planned Parenthood. The lack of an agreement is still about the amount of money to be cut, and where it will be cut, and how to make the cuts permanent – avoiding the Democrat ruse of calling cut monies, those funds not yet spent. It’s about money, about funding abortion and slashing geen regulations -because we cannot afford them, and taxpayers should not be required to fund either. Having said all that, three prominent Republicans are encouraging John Boehner to move on.
Democrats are grousing that Republicans are evil for putting “social issues,” (abortion and green regulations) into a continuing resolution – Harry Reid’s women will not get cancer screenings now – but Democrats did exactly the same thing in 2009, when they controlled Congress and Obama signed their policies into law (as you will read in the New York Times article linked below). That particular legislation took away school vouchers for children in the D.C. area, some who attended the same school where the Obama girls are schooled. Boehner spokesman, Kevin Smith, said Democrats have supported “hundreds, if not thousands,” of policy riders during their time in Washington.
Hot Air quotes Harry Reid saying Obama will “not bend” on defunding Planned Parenthood. In other words, funding PP is more important than shutting down the government. Clearly, Obama believes Boehner will blink.
There are reports of “hundreds” of Planned Parenthood supporters in the Capital yesterday to protest Republicans. A question: if Planned Parenthood’s main mission is to provide health care exams to low income women, then why do they need abortion funding? And why can they not eschew it? And why are these low income women not enrolled in Medicaid? This is another duplicative agency if medical exams are the root of their existence.
This source says PP “serves over 5 Million clients a year, 26% of which are teenagers under the age of 19.” This statistic shows us how parents have been taken out of the lives of their children.
Perhaps Planned Parenthood would agree to not using abortion as a means of birth control.
Kathryn Jean Lopez says this isn’t about abortion, it’s about reinstating the Dornan amendment which bans federally-funded abortions in Washington, D.C. except in cases of incest, rape or medical necessity. Abortions – still legal, just not funded by taxpayer. Democrats overturned the Dornan Amendment in the omnibus spending in 2010. Republicans have it back in the CRA.
Article I of the U.S. Constitution allows Congress plenary legislative authority over the District of Columbia, including the entire District of Columbia budget that is approved as a part of the annual Financial Services Appropriations bill. This means Congress bears constitutional responsibility for the use of funds raised through District of Columbia local taxes, as well as federal funds allocated for the District of Columbia.
On Thursday, Republicans passed a one-week spending bill — one almost surely destined to fail in the Senate — that featured one of the key provisions they are seeking.
The measure would reinstate a policy, scotched a few years ago by Democrats, that prevented the District of Columbia from using locally generated taxes to provide financial help to poor women for abortions. (The use of federal funds for abortion is already prohibited.) Because this law was on the books for years — passed by Democrats as a rider to unrelated bills — it has perhaps the best chance of surviving in any spending compromise.
Republicans also seek to prohibit payments for abortions overseas — a measure known as the “Mexico City” policy that was overturned by an executive order from Mr. Obama. Another rider seeks to end the United States’ contribution to the United Nations Population Fund, which focuses on reproductive health.
Finally, rather than cut all federal funds for Planned Parenthood, House Republicans would like to take the money given to it and other family planning organizations and give it to state health departments to spread at their discretion.
Presumably, states controlled by Republican legislatures would choose not to give that money to Planned Parenthood. This rider has become a major sticking point, as it is a priority for House Republicans and inflames Democrats.
On January 23, 2009, the first act Obama signed as President was to rescind Reagan and G.W. Bush’s Mexico City Policy, banning American tax payer dollars being used for abortions outside of U.S. borders. Understand that: your money is paying for abortions today, courtesy of Barack Obama.
Then ObamaCare came along and Democrats screamed that abortion funding was not in the bill, but it was. Democrats told us that the long-ago Hyde Amendment protects U.S. tax dollars being used for abortion. But…But…
The Senate bill authorizes and appropriates billions of dollars in new funding — outside the scope of the appropriations bill covered by the Hyde amendment…These funds are new, and over he next five years they will be provided without being appropriated in the Labor/HHS appropriations act; therefore they are not covered by the Hyde amendment, which says only funds “appropriated in the Act…may not be used for elective abortions.
I’m fairly sick of hearing Republicans asked why policy restrictions should be a part of a continuing resolution, and only one of many answers is that defunding Planned Parenthood cuts spending. Duh! There is no rational argument to conclude that I should pay for a condom unless it is my choice to do so. Certainly, I should pay for no one’s abortion – and don’t try to tell me it is about women’s health. The poorest among us must find their own way. If I am contributing toward their food bill, they can pay for their own birth control. Argggggghhhh.
Then there are the green initiatives being cut in the bill if Republicans stay strong (New York Times link above:
Republicans are also seeking to undo years of environmental regulations, greatly restricting the Environmental Protection Agency’s authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions. House Republicans are broadly seeking to match a Senate bill offered by Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Republican minority leader — one that failed in that chamber — to prohibit new greenhouse gas regulations and suspend others.
Senators Pat Toomey (R-PA) and Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Congresswoman Michele Bachmann are siding with Democrats and advising Boehner to move on – take the cuts, avoid the shutdown and “fight bigger battles.” I’m perplexed about this, especially about Bachmann’s stance. After all this is about abortion, and about the EPA, and most importantly, seeing that the cuts actually cut. How can that be unimportant?