The following news release was issued on Aug. 4, 2015.
WASHINGTON – U.S. Sens. Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar joined Senate Democrats Monday to block a bill that would end all federal funding of the nation's largest abortion provider. The measure, S. 1881, would block funding of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) and its affiliates. The Senate showed strong support for the bill but fell short of the votes required to advance the legislation.
The votes cast by senators Klobuchar and Franken are consistent with their 100 percent pro-abortion voting records. Neither Klobuchar nor Franken has ever cast a pro-life vote in the U.S. Senate.
"Planned Parenthood's political arm is a major backer of many senators, who voted to block the bill to defund their political ally," said Scott Fischbach, Executive Director of Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life (MCCL). "As longtime recipients of Planned Parenthood campaign funding, senators Klobuchar and Franken chose to continue to support Planned Parenthood in spite of its dismemberment of living human beings in the womb."
Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, introduced S. 1881 last week with the strong backing of Majority Leader McConnell, in response to a series of videos released by The Center for Medical Progress. The videos, which underscore the need for passage of legislation to cut off all federal funds to Planned Parenthood and its affiliates, show top Planned Parenthood officials discussing the harvesting and trafficking of body parts from unborn babies killed by abortion.
S. 1881 states, "Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no federal funds may be made available to Planned Parenthood Federation of America, or to any of its affiliates, subsidiaries, successors, or clinics." The bill also contains language to provide that "all funds no longer available to Planned Parenthood will continue to be made available to other eligible entities to provide women's health care services." In other words, any funds cut from Planned Parenthood would be reallocated to women's health services provided by others.
Community health centers across the United States vastly outnumber Planned Parenthood, totaling 9,059 to 669, according to the Washington Post. Women could still access the health care they need without Planned Parenthood.
"Senator Ernst's bill would push the snout of Planned Parenthood, a bloated abortion mega-marketer and a fetal organ trafficker, out of the U.S. Treasury feeding trough," said Douglas Johnson, legislative director for National Right to Life.
Planned Parenthood performs more abortions than any other organization in the nation: About one-third of all abortions in the U.S. are performed at Planned Parenthood-affiliated facilities. According to its most recent annual report, Planned Parenthood receives at least $528 million annually from the federal government and other levels of government.