Though Rep. Diane Black opposed a government shutdown, she ultimately decided to vote against the continuing resolution to fund the government because it included funding for Planned Parenthood.
Black’s decision to vote against the CR is yet another stark example of how the pro-life base of the Republican Party is exerting significant force and changing the landscape of Washington, D.C.
The author of the stand-alone Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015 that the House approved, Black was persistent in her message that a government shutdown would not be an effective strategy to defund the nation’s largest abortion provider, even in the wake of videos exposing its practices of selling the harvested body parts of aborted babies.
The Tennessee representative, who is a nurse, challenged Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards during a hearing of the House Oversight Committee Tuesday. In response to Black’s questions about her abortion business, Richards responded, “Abortion is healthcare.”
“I have always said that I oppose a government shutdown because it would not defund Planned Parenthood and risks diluting our pro-life message to those who need to hear it most,” Black says in a statement sent to Breitbart News. “That said, the House could have fought harder and smarter to combat the federal funding of this scandal-ridden abortion giant before we arrived at this point.”
“I find it unacceptable that this chamber never attempted to send the Senate a Continuing Resolution that reflected the values of our pro-life majority,” she continued. “Instead, House leaders accepted the Senate-initiated Continuing Resolution without even offering a fight.”
Ultimately, the Republican leaders’ “strategy” – which really amounted to an avoidance of being blamed by President Obama, the Democrats, and the mainstream media for a government shutdown – failed for them. They required Democrat votes to pass the CR, House Speaker John Boehner is resigning, and there is the suggestion that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell could be next.
“An eleventh-hour ‘clean’ stopgap bill like this – especially in light of what we know about Planned Parenthood – should be a last resort, not a starting point, and I used my vote on behalf of Tennessee’s 6th District to express my disapproval,” Black added. “With this vote behind us, I am once again calling on the Senate to pass my standalone bill to freeze funding for Planned Parenthood so that we can put this measure on the President’s desk and show just where his priorities lie.”