Speaker Paul Ryan has announced that the House of Representatives is working on a new plan to defund Planned Parenthood. The Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) replacement bill — known as the American Health Care Act — would have defunded the abortion giant, but when that failed, Republicans needed to come up with a new plan. Now, Republicans are working to get a bill through Congress that would repeal Obamacare, rather than replace it, but will use a budget reconciliation bill to defund Planned Parenthood.
While Republicans hold both houses of Congress, they only hold a slight majority in the Senate. This leaves them vulnerable to being filibustered; reconciliation allows them to get around that possibility, by requiring a simple majority vote in both chambers, and less time to pass the bill. If the bill passed the House, it would need only 51 votes in the Senate.
“We think reconciliation is the tool, because that gets it in law,” Ryan said at a press conference. “Reconciliation is the way to go.”
The other option to defund Planned Parenthood was through the continuing resolution funding the government; it expires at the end of April. But going that route not only leaves Republicans vulnerable to the filibuster, but it could cause a government shutdown.
Planned Parenthood currently receives $500 million a year in taxpayer funding.
Live Action President Lila Rose released a statement urging Congress to act immediately to defund Planned Parenthood through the budget reconciliation bill:
Congress and President Trump must act now to use the current budget reconciliation bill to end the forced taxpayer funding of abortion giant Planned Parenthood and end the use of Obamacare subsidies to buy health insurance that pays for abortions.
There is no more time for delay. Every day Congress fails to redirect tax dollars away from Planned Parenthood, the abortion chain gets another $1.5 million from taxpayers to keep its doors open and kill 887 more preborn children.
According to its own annual reports, Planned Parenthood does less than one percent of all Pap tests in the United States, less than two percent of all clinical breast exams, zero mammograms, and virtually no prenatal care, yet it does 34.9 percent of all U.S. abortions, killing over 320,000 preborn children every year. Former Planned Parenthood managers have provided testimonials about how the abortion giant uses quotas to push cash-making abortions, doesn’t provide the health care it claims it does, and ‘treats women like cattle.’
America’s women and children deserve better, and Washington must ensure that taxpayer money spent on health care for women is actually spent on health care, not on keeping the doors to America’s largest abortion chain open. Congress and President Trump must immediately redirect the hundreds of millions in taxpayer subsidies now going to Planned Parenthood to thousands of community health centers that provide more access and more health care for women and their families.