Congress lets states block some Planned Parenthood money

Politico reports that Pence cast a vote that could allow Congress to roll back a rule President Obama put in place blocking states from stripping family planning funding from health care centers that offer abortion.

With Republican Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of ME voting against proceeding to the joint resolution, the chamber had to wait for Georgia Republican Johnny Isakson to return to the floor with the aid of a walker just to get to a 50-50.

Vice President Mike Pence cast a tie-breaking vote in the Senate on Thursday that paves the way for states to defund Planned Parenthood. Pence broke his first tie on the nomination of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. Republicans want to scrap the rule. If the organization can afford a $20 million privately-funded office, perhaps Planned Parenthood really won't be reduced to the dark ages without taxpayer cash.

The U.S. Senate is expected to vote today (March 30) on a measure that would free states to bar funds for Planned Parenthood.

In Napa, the only alternative for them is Planned Parenthood, and they use it consistently with excellent results.

Title X is a federal grant program that provides funds for family planning services. Chuck Schumer, D-NY, said "just another example of the Republican war on women". Then Senator Johnny Isakson, a Georgia Republican who underwent back surgery recently and has been absent from the capitol, appeared on the Senate floor and created the tie. The fact that Donald Trump hasn't even reached the 100-day mark in his presidency and Pence has already had to break two ties is certainly reflective of how partisan US politics are at the moment.

Freedom Caucus Chairman Rep. Mark Meadows of North Carolina said on Sunday that there wouldn't be a problem funding the government next month, but Collender urged taking that promise with a grain of salt, saying that the members of Meadows' group have learned not to telegraph a shutdown so far in advance. The rule from December 2016 required funds be awarded based on a provider's ability to "effectively deliver Title X services".

Even with the Republican failure to repeal Barack Obama's health care law, Democratic lawmakers in some states are pressing ahead with efforts to protect birth control access, Planned Parenthood funding and abortion coverage in case they are jeopardized in the future.

"This regulation is an unnecessary restriction on states that know their residents' own needs best", said Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

The restrictions sharply curtailed services to low-income women, HHS said.

The Los Angeles Times editorial board slammed what it called the state's "disturbing overreach" in its decision to prosecute felonies of two pro-life activists for undercover videos filmed primarily at Planned Parenthood facilities.

  • Larry Hoffman