Newsbreak

U.S. Senate will vote on a bill that stops funding Planned Parenthood

As tension mounts about the possibility of a federal shutdown – all wedged within the issue of abortion – the Senate is poised to cast a vote Thursday on a budget resolution which would last through December 11, and does not include funding for Planned Parenthood.

The Continuing Appropriations Resolution of 2016 says:

All funds that are no longer available to Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc. and its affiliates and clinics pursuant to this section will continue to be made available to other eligible entities to provide women’s health care services.
For the one-year period beginning on the date of the enactment of this Act, subject to subsection (c) of this section, no funds authorized or appropriated by Federal law may be made available for any  purpose to Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc., or any affiliate or clinic of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc., unless such entities certify that Planned Parenthood Federation of America affiliates and clinics will not perform, and will not provide any funds to any other entity that performs, an abortion during such period.

The  resolution does have a clause for exceptions for rape, incest or the mother’s physical endangerment, as certified by a physician.

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The resolution does not remove any funding for women’s health care; it simply redistributes it to the many organizations that provide care to poor and needy women. Those clinics are actually far more accessible than Planned Parenthood facilities, and women will find more access available for their actual health care needs with this budget. The resolution emphasizes:

Nothing in this section shall be construed to reduce overall Federal funding available in support of women’s health. Senator Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) set up the vote to follow Pope Francis’s address to Congress. The Washington Times reports:

“I know Democrats have already blocked virtually every bill to fund the government this year, but I’m asking them to allow the Senate to fund the government now,” Mr. McConnell said.

The resolution authored by Senate Appropriations Chairman Thad Cochran, Mississippi Republican, would allow Congress to avoid a government shutdown on Oct. 1 and provide a 10-week window to negotiate the rest of the appropriations bills for fiscal 2016.

Democrats are predicted to block any budget resolutions that don’t fund the abortion giant. Senator James Lankford (R-OK), who has been an outspoken advocate for life and has introduced legislation to defund Planned Parenthood, told Lifesite News:

We must continue to fight for the lives of unborn children through multiple legislative routes. This debate shouldn’t be partisan. I hope more Democrats will join us in at least putting a freeze on this spending while Planned Parenthood is being investigated for the tragic harvesting of baby body parts.

Despite this, many Democrats insist that the facts unearthed by The Center for Medical Progress’s videos are irrelevant because Planned Parenthood provides so much “good” to poor and needy women. However, taking money from Planned Parenthood would provide greater access to poor and needy women as that funding is redistributed to comprehensive health care facilities which provide the same services, minus abortion.

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