National and state pro-life groups are sending a letter to GOP congressional leaders urging Republicans to use the reconciliation budgetary process to defund Planned Parenthood.
The letter, principally addressed to Senate Budget Committee chairman Sen. Mike Enzi and House Budget Committee chairman Rep. Tom Price, pledges the pro-life groups’ “full support of using the reconciliation process to defund Planned Parenthood and other abortion businesses of taxpayer funding under several mandatory programs such as Medicaid.”
Medicaid is the primary source of federal funds for Planned Parenthood. Some states have attempted to eliminate the abortion business’ federal funds, but have been blocked by federal judges. The Obama administration — a major supporter of Planned Parenthood — has also threatened to take action against states that attempt to defund the organization following the release of videos that have exposed its practice of harvesting the organs of unborn babies for sale on the open market.
Recently, a credentialed forensic company has confirmed that the videos, produced by the Center for Medical Progress, have not been manipulated or “deceptively edited,” as Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards and the organization’s supporters have claimed.
The letter states:
No trace of concern for women’s health appears in these videos. Instead, the videos detail Planned Parenthood’s willingness to manipulate abortion methods – possibly even using the banned partial-birth abortion procedure – to more easily obtain hearts, lungs, brains, and other organs to be sold to tissue brokers. This, despite the fact that mothers are required to sign a consent form stating that the abortion method will in no way be changed to procure these body parts. Further, the videos show that this manipulation of abortion methods can result in babies being born intact, with a heart beating or able to be restarted, and therefore alive.
These videos offer just a glimpse into the abortion industry’s day-to-day horrific practices. Over one million abortions are performed annually in the United States, with nearly 330,000 occurring in Planned Parenthood facilities, all the way up to 24 weeks of pregnancy, past the time when recent studies show that a substantial percentage of these children can be saved if treated with the best techniques of modern perinatal medicine. Regardless of whether Americans identify as pro-life or pro-choice, we should all be able to agree that taxpayer dollars should not be subsidizing an already cash-flush industry.
The pro-life groups urge GOP leaders to redirect federal funds from Planned Parenthood to women’s healthcare centers that provide more expansive healthcare and do not perform abortions.
“For these reasons and more we support using the reconciliation process to end Medicaid funding to Planned Parenthood and other abortion businesses,” the letter’s signers say. “Using this process will ensure that pro-abortion extremists in the Senate will be unable to further filibuster Congressional action on this urgent issue.”
As Breitbart News’ Mike Flynn explained in March:
Congress, particularly the Senate, can use “reconciliation” to make policy changes that involve the final budget agreement. Reconciliation limits the amount of debate in the Senate on the final resolution and, most importantly, operates outside the filibuster process, so it requires only a simply majority of 51 votes for passage.
Reconciliation was used in the 1990s when Bill Clinton was in the White House and Republicans controlled Congress to produce the last real balanced budget. It was used to pass the Bush tax cuts early in his presidency. It was also used to enact ObamaCare.
President Obama has said he will veto any measure that defunds Planned Parenthood.
The pro-life signers include Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of Susan B. Anthony List, Tony Perkins, president of Family Research Council, Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life Committee, Jeanne Mancini, president of March for Life, Penny Nance, president of Concerned Women for America, Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America, Father Frank Pavone, national director of Priests for Life, Alveda King, director of African American Outreach of Priests for Life, and Ryan Bomberger, chief creative officer of the Radiance Foundation.