As we circle back to the Townhall Media/Hot Air poll released earlier today, it seems that voters are split 42/41 concerning banning abortions after the fifth month of pregnancy. Additionally, they’re overwhelmingly against blocking funds that go to Planned Parenthood 64/25. The issue of government funds going to Planned Parenthood has become a contentious issue in light of Center for Medical Progress’ investigation into the non-profit that allegedly shows them engaging in illegal trafficking of human body parts from aborted babies. Planned Parenthood’s CEO, Cecile Richards, is set to testify before Congress on the matter.
There is a growing conservative chorus clamoring to shut down the government over Planned Parenthood funding. Yet, 71 percent want Congress to pass a spending bill to keep it open. National Right To Life President Carol Tobias has said that while she thinks that no federal funds should go to Planned Parenthood, it won’t “accomplish what we want.” That being said, President Obama is probably one of the most pro-abortion presidents in recent memory. He stands firmly behind Planned Parenthood. Do conservatives think they can defund this organization with his signature? No. Plus, Obama has the votes to sustain a veto if a spending bill defunding Planned Parenthood is passed. It’s similar to the 2013 government shutdown, where only the most detached thought Obama would gut Obamacare, his signature domestic achievement. It’s wholly unrealistic, and this pie-in-the-sky dream will only make 71 percent of the country hates the pro-life candidates running in 2016, according to Tobias:
There are two different roads that we can take. One is to insist that no more money go to Planned Parenthood and cause a government shutdown (which won’t result in actually defunding Planned Parenthood). The other is to take a slightly longer-term approach, taking advantage of the fact that we have the attention of the country as probably never before, laying the foundation to defund Planned Parenthood after we elect a pro-life president in 2016, by conducting hearings and passing a series of bills that will not only educate the American public about Planned Parenthood, but make members of Congress show, by their votes, if they support the largest abortion provider in the nation.
An August vote showed that at most, 55 senators are willing to defund Planned Parenthood. There is no evidence to suggest that any of the 45 senators who support Planned Parenthood will change their minds or that a government shutdown will convince at least five senators to switch their position. In reality, in a shutdown context there would be less than 55 votes against Planned Parenthood, not more.
Every well-informed pro-lifer wants to defund Planned Parenthood. I want to defund Planned Parenthood. There are wonderful pro-life men and women in Congress who want to defund Planned Parenthood. And, certainly, National Right to Life wants to defund Planned Parenthood. The difference here is in strategy.
National Right to Life is looking at the bigger, long-term picture. We need a pro-life president who will work with us to take away the tax dollars that flow to this repulsive, immoral organization. We need a pro-life president who will appoint justices to the Supreme Court who will allow legislators to restore legal protections to unborn children.
And, yes, as like Clinton before him, Obama would win the messaging war if government were to shut down as he did in 2013. Right now, House Republicans, who are against a government shutdown, are trying to lobby their pro-shutdown colleagues away from such a position. Success is dubious, with the government projected to run out of money by October 1.