Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) withdrew an overseas spending bill last week that would have provided $665 million for “family planning and reproductive health care” overseas and funds for the pro-abortion U.N. Population Fund.
C-Fam and the Eagle Forum reported McConnell withdrew the State and Foreign Operations (SFOPs) bill after New Hampshire Democrat Sen. Jeanne Shaheen inserted an amendment into the bill to provide support to groups that promote abortions overseas – a move that would have clearly undermined the Trump administration’s pro-life policies.
A coalition of 44 national pro-life leaders sent a letter in October to McConnell and House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) voicing their vehement opposition to the Shaheen amendment.
Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT), chairman of the Senate pro-life caucus, joined with these leaders in asking McConnell to amend the bill before it advanced.
“It’s our duty to protect the most vulnerable in our society,” Daines said, according to C-Fam. “I am deeply concerned about how this amendment undermines pro-life policies abroad and I will continue to work to defeat it.”
SFOPs was part of the Bipartisan Budget Agreement reached by Congress and the White House in July. The agreement clearly stipulated, “[T]here will be no poison pills, additional new riders…unless agreed to on a bipartisan basis by the four leaders with the approval of the President.”
C-Fam reported Shaheen’s longstanding attempts to force American taxpayers to fund promoting abortion overseas:
Shaheen, a longtime member of the subcommittee tasked with funding overseas diplomacy, development and humanitarian assistance, annually proposes an amendment that undermines U.S. funding restrictions on abortion and abortion-related activities and increases funding to family planning groups abroad that are known to promote abortion.
The Shaheen amendment routinely passes due to support from two Republican senators who promote abortion—Susan Collins (R-ME) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK).
In addition, Shaheen introduced this year in her amendment a non-discrimination policy, reported C-Fam, that bars “discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, sexual orientation and gender identity.”
Thus, the amendment would have not only promoted abortion overseas, but the radical LGBT agenda.
Eunie Smith, president of the Eagle Forum, said in a statement sent to Breitbart News the Shaheen amendment would have undercut the pro-life initiatives of the Trump administration:
Through the adoption of the Mexico City Policy, or the Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance (PLGHA) policy, the United States has successfully prevented foreign organizations from using tax-payer money for abortion services. However, PLGHA does not prevent funds from being used by domestic organizations working overseas.
“The Senate majority proved that they are not willing to compromise on life by rejecting the Shaheen amendment which allocated these overseas-based American organizations $665 million dollars to continue their atrocious life-ending work,” she added.