Bill would curtail flow of federal taxpayer dollars to nation’s abortion giant
November 17, 2015
RE: Reconciliation Bill (H.R. 3762)
The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), the federation of state right-to-life organizations, strongly supports the House-passed reconciliation bill, H.R. 3762, because of its provision to block approximately 89% of all federal funding to Planned Parenthood – about $400 million in the next year. Other measures to defund Planned Parenthood have been blocked by filibuster, but this cannot occur with the reconciliation bill.
We are aware that one advocacy group, despite its ostensible devotion to defunding Planned Parenthood, is urging that the reconciliation bill should be employed solely for the purpose of repealing Obamacare. National Right to Life is strongly opposed to many major elements of Obamacare, and we have supported and do support efforts to repeal the Obamacare law and replace it with provisions that do not subsidize abortion and do not result in rationing of lifesaving medical treatments. But with respect to the reconciliation bill, we must be very clear: When a substitute amendment is offered to H.R. 3762 in the Senate, we expect that the roll call on its adoption will be a scorecard vote for National Right to Life. If the substitute does not contain the House-passed provision to defund Planned Parenthood, NRLC would expect to score against the substitute, regardless of what other provisions it contains.
Likewise, on final passage of the reconciliation bill, we would expect to score a vote in favor of the bill as a key pro-life vote – but only if the provision to defund Planned Parenthood is still part of the bill. As we said in an action alert disseminated to our affiliates nationwide yesterday, “The pro-life vote is to pass the bill, for the sake of the defunding of Planned Parenthood – no excuses!”
We are aware that certain journalists have repeatedly speculated that several senators may oppose the bill if it contains the House-passed provision to defund Planned Parenthood (although no senator has yet confirmed such a stance). But regardless of the ultimate decisions of those few senators on the legislation, we are confident in asserting here that a substantially greater number of senators would oppose the reconciliation bill, if the provision to defund Planned Parenthood were dropped.
Douglas D. Johnson
National Right to Life Committee