When Planned Parenthood can’t bully its way to what it wants, it can still wish ill upon things that don’t go its way – like the Helms Amendment. In a tweet last week, the group used The Smiths and their song, “Unhappy Birthday,” as a mouthpiece to convey its sentiments toward the Helms Amendment:
— Planned Parenthood (@PPact) December 17, 2014
Since 1973, the Helms Amendment has ensured that abortion stays out of US foreign aid appropriations. The amendment was the first major pro-life victory after Roe v. Wade, setting the tone for pro-life legislative efforts going forward. It ensures that the hard-earned dollars of U.S. taxpayers are not forced to pay for international abortion procedures, or to coerce any person into committing abortions.
The Helms Amendment does not prohibit federal funds from helping with abortion follow-up care, however. Foreign aid may still be used to provide care to women who have had abortions (legally or illegally). It simply cannot be used to pay for the actual abortion.
Planned Parenthood, the Guttmacher Institute, NARAL, and others have often bemoaned the Helms Amendment and its hindrance to abortion on demand without any restrictions whatsoever. But Americans in general are a little more level-headed than these groups, and their political representatives consistently vote to include Helms Amendment language in foreign aid appropriations year after year…after year.