On September 30, the government runs out of money, and a sizable portion of House Republicans have already made their intentions known about one thing on any future spending bills: they will not vote to fund Planned Parenthood (via Politico):
Government funding runs out Sept. 30, and dozens of conservative House Republicans want to use the upcoming legislative debate to cut off federal funding for the women’s health group.
But in two separate meetings — first, in a Senate GOP lunch Wednesday afternoon, and later during a closed House Republican meeting Wednesday evening — lawmakers discussed using the fast-track budget reconciliation process instead. That could help avoid a government shutdown, which looms at the end of the month.
Gov. Bobby Jindal voiced his anger about the recent string of videos that allegedly show the non-profit engaging in human trafficking of body parts from aborted babies during last night’s Republican debate. Granted, it was the undercard debate:
If we can’t defund Planned Parenthood now, if we can’t stand for innocent human life after these barbaric videos, it is time to be done with the Republican Party,” If we can’t defund Planned Parenthood now, if we can’t stand for innocent human life after these barbaric videos, it is time to be done with the Republican Party.”Yet, concerning public opinion, a CNN/ORC poll found that 71 percent supported Congress passing a bill to keep the government running.
Also, National Right To Life’s President Carol Tobias said that a shutdown over Planned Parenthood isn’t going to do much regarding their agenda. For starters, Ms. Tobias lists the main reason for why a shutdown over funding would be a fool’s errand: Obama is in the White House; he has veto power; and he has the votes to sustain it.
Quite frankly, I think Planned Parenthood is a vile organization, and I resent the fact that they get any tax money,” Ms. Tobias said. “But realistically, with President Obama in the White House holding that veto pen, I don’t know that any government shutdown could accomplish what we want. What we have to do is get a new pro-life president in, and we’d have a much better chance of actually taking away their money.”
Ms. Tobias said she preferred the approach of stand-alone measures, like those the House is set to consider this week, denying funding only for Planned Parenthood affiliates that perform abortions. She said the reality of the situation was that President Obama “would be willing to shut down the government, take money away from the military, take money away from the national parks, put all of the federal employees on leave — he would do anything and everything to keep that money flowing to Planned Parenthood.”
The talk about repealing Obamacare and defunding Planned Parenthood is limited because of that reality. In principle, of course, conservatives should support such policies that seek to replace Obamacare with something more efficient, more market-based, and does more to reduce costs; the latter of which constituted the core of the debate. Remember the whole Obamacare will save trillions over the next ten years talking point?
As long as Obama is in the White House, he won’t sign appropriation bills that defund Planned Parenthood–and he certainly won’t gut his signature domestic achievement. The best way to accomplish both of those policy goals is to elect a Republican in 2016.