Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Congress votes to defund Planned Parenthood; Peterson only Democrat willing to protect the unborn

The following news release was issued on Jan. 6, 2016.

Congressman Collin Peterson (DFL, CD7) again today was the only Democrat to vote in favor of a pro-life bill in the U.S. House of Representatives.

The House took up a special fast-track bill (H.R. 3762, the "pro-life reconciliation bill") that would cut off nearly 90 percent of the federal funds that go to Planned Parenthood—about $400 million. Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life (MCCL) strongly supports the measure, along with the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC).

Minnesota Congressmen John Kline (CD2), Erik Paulsen (CD3), Tom Emmer (CD6) and Peterson voted in support of the Senate amendments to the Restoring Americans' Healthcare Freedom Reconciliation Act (H.R. 3762). Members of Congress Tim Walz, Betty McCollum, Keith Ellison and Rick Nolan voted against the measure, which was approved in a 240-181 vote.

"We commend Representative Peterson for his longstanding commitment to life, and urge other Democrats to follow his lead," said MCCL Executive Director Scott Fischbach. "The cause of life must transcend partisan boundaries. Life is not a partisan issue but rather, most importantly, a human rights issue. Here in Minnesota we are fortunate to have pro-life Democrats and pro-life Republicans who are willing to cross the political divide to protect and defend human life."

The legislation would suspend funding of Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider, for one year. It would close the largest pipeline for federal funding of Planned Parenthood, Medicaid, and apply as well to the CHIP and the Title V and Title XX block grant programs. The amounts denied to Planned Parenthood in effect are reallocated to community health centers.

In addition, the Senate-passed H.R. 3762 would repeal many components of Obamacare, including the program that provides taxpayer subsidies to about 1,000 health plans that cover elective abortions.

The legislation will now be sent to President Obama, who has threatened to veto it.