In an exclusive interview, Rep. Diane Black (R-TN) tells Breitbart News she is continuing her push to defund Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider.
While the House is in recess, Black, the author of a measure that would defund Planned Parenthood, says: “I’ve gotten assurance from House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy that we will take up this bill when we get back.”
“He indicated to me he wanted the committees that have jurisdiction to hold hearings so the House could begin investigations itself, since it looks like we don’t have assurances from Attorney General Loretta Lynch that she will do so, and that this bill will be considered this fall,” she explains. “I’m hoping it will be sooner than later.”
Black has been aware of the fallacies presented by Planned Parenthood for years, even back when she was a state lawmaker in Tennessee.
“I worked for years to get Planned Parenthood defunded in Tennessee, with the hope of redirecting those funds to Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) that were doing a great job of offering preventive care for women, without abortions, and in a much larger way than Planned Parenthood,” she says. “Those clinics even often do mammograms, whereas Planned Parenthood does not do a mammogram, but it refers women over, and it would refer women for other things they could not do as well.”
Several years ago, Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards was exposed by pro-life group Live Action for misleading Americans with the claim that her taxpayer funded organization did provide mammograms.
Even though Planned Parenthood does not offer mammograms, Black confirms the organization is reimbursed for referring women to other providers who do supply them.
“So one of these either state or county FQHCs, or even a faith-based clinic, would provide a much more complete array of health services for women than Planned Parenthood,” she says.
Black, who has been a nurse for some 40 years and is a member of the Congressional Pro-Life Caucus, explains the various ways in which Planned Parenthood is funded.
“One source is Title X, which is supposed to be funding for ‘healthy family planning,’” she explains. “However, Planned Parenthood does over 327,000 abortions a year. And if you look at the percentage of pregnancy services they give, 94% of their pregnancy services are abortions – that’s not ‘healthy family planning.’”
“Planned Parenthood also receives Medicaid money, which is probably their greatest source of income they get from the federal government,” Black adds.
The federal government gives taxpayer money to individual states to fund their Medicaid programs along with a basic set of requirements of what must be covered. States, however, have flexibility in how they spend their Medicaid funding.
According to the Susan B. Anthony List, which published a fact sheet on Planned Parenthood’s 2013-2014 annual report, the organization received more than $528 million in taxpayer funding that year, which accounts for 41% of its overall revenue. Additionally, for every adoption referral it claims to have conducted, Planned Parenthood performed 174 abortions.
The same report indicates that Planned Parenthood’s prenatal care services dropped 4% and cancer prevention services were down 17%.
One of the things we learned at the state level is that the FQHCs really wanted to do more and see more patients and expand their services, but they were competing with Planned Parenthood on the number of dollars that came down from the federal government through Title X. So, we were able to send the money that would have been sent to Planned Parenthood in Tennessee to these other clinics that did a really good job.
She warns, however, of yet another opportunity for funding for the abortion giant:
One of my colleagues was able to get the President to write a grant to Planned Parenthood in Memphis that would make up for what it lost in Title X funds. So, grants can be given just by someone in the administration who decides they’re going to give a grant to a Planned Parenthood affiliate. So, Title X, Medicaid, and grants are the three ways Planned Parenthood affiliates get funded by the federal government.
One of the grants some Planned Parenthood affiliates have received more recently is the “navigator” grant from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for assisting Americans in signing up for Obamacare.
Asked if she believes Planned Parenthood is motivated to sign more people up for Obamacare since, as an expansion of Medicaid, the health reform would benefit Planned Parenthood itself, Black responded, “I would draw that conclusion. Obviously there has to be some benefit to Planned Parenthood to help sign people up for Obamacare. I doubt they just do it out of the goodness of their heart.”
Breitbart News asked Black about Planned Parenthood supporters’ frequent narrative that the organization doesn’t obtain taxpayer funds for abortions, which is against the Hyde Amendment.
“They will say the money they’re given from the federal government through the states is not for abortions,” she says. “They say on one side of the wall they’re doing preventive healthcare and on the other side of the wall they’re doing abortions in the same building. How do you say taxpayer money kept the lights going on one side of the building, but not on the other side? Anyone who looks at this reasonably knows exactly what is happening.”
In March, in fact, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report that confirms Planned Parenthood and five other groups are using taxpayer funds to advocate for abortions as “reproductive healthcare.”
Black praised the undercover investigative work of Center for Medical Progress for demonstrating what is really occurring inside Planned Parenthood.
“The videos put the entire scenario together of what is happening behind the doors of Planned Parenthood and what is really the heart and soul of the organization.” She adds:
Cecile Richards wants to condemn the Center for Medical Progress. If I were in charge of Planned Parenthood, and I wasn’t doing anything wrong I would come out and say, “I want you to come in and investigate. I want you to see what we do. I want the American public to know that we are an upstanding organization that is providing the kind of services that we say we’re providing.”
“So, my bill says the money can go to other facilities that qualify,” she continues. “No services will be lost as a result of that. We want to make sure that taxpayer dollars –half a billion dollars a year – is doing what it is intended to do.”
Black’s bill, the Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015, had 150 cosponsors when the House began its recess.
“My bill says Planned Parenthood will not receive another dime until there is an investigation done,” she states. “That money can still be used at other facilities that provide these preventive health services, so no one is going to go without services.”
Black emphasizes this point because many Planned Parenthood supporters claim that defunding the abortion giant will leave women out on the streets without healthcare.
“That’s not so at all. The money can still go to the states and go to the FQHCs and they will still be providing those services,” she asserts. “We need to investigate Planned Parenthood and what criminal activity is found to be true. I think there is enough suspicion in those videos to warrant an investigation.”
Black believes the content of the videos speaks to all Americans.
“For me, I think both Democrats and Republicans – anyone with a conscience – should be appalled by this immoral activity that we see in these videos and be willing to say ‘Let’s slow down, and find out what really is going on,’” she continues. “It is interesting that Democrats are not running to the floor of the House to defend what was on these videos.”
“The videos show what some of us have been saying about Planned Parenthood for a number of years, things that would make most people with a conscience just shiver,” Black adds. “We’re one of only seven nations that allow elective late-term abortions. The way we are treating our unborn is something everyone in this country should be looking at. It’s not a Democrat or Republican issue, it’s a human issue.”