US Senate Kills Family-Planning Rule; Pence Breaks Tie
- Author: Larry Hoffman Apr 03, 2017,
Apr 03, 2017, 7:39
With a successful vote on Thursday, the Senate paved the way for states to individually decide whether to withhold federal funding to health care organizations that also perform abortions. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska-voted against the resolution, while none of the 48 Democrats voted for it.
There is already a ban on using federal funds for abortion except for rare instances. Patty Murray, D-Wash., using a nickname for the failed House health care bill.
'We are so grateful that Vice President Mike Pence.traveled up to Pennsylvania Avenue to cast the tie-breaking vote'.
What's next for Planned Parenthood? Joni Ernst (R-IA) sponsored the measure in the Senate.
"As a direct result of the vote today, extreme politicians in states across the country will have the power to [block the rights of women]", said Sen. "It provides birth control, certainly, but provides well-women exams, cancer screenings, and sexually transmitted disease testing and screening", said Rose. Vice President Pence had to cast his vote in order to break the tie.
Mike Pence was the deciding factor Thursday, after two Republicans joined Democrats in rejecting the bill-another Congressional Review Act repeal of a late Obama administration rule.
Now, however, the bill negating Obama's "last-minute gift" goes to President Trump's desk, where he is expected to sign it.
The measure, he said, "will disproportionately hurt people in rural and underserved areas where these clinics are more often than not their primary source of health care". The House of Representatives approved the measure in a 230-188 vote in February. Susan Collins of ME and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, voted no and forced GOP leaders to call on Vice President Pence to cast the deciding vote.
"This bill would make it even easier for states led by extreme politicians to deny family planning providers federal dollars, not because quality of care that they get or provide, but based on whether the politicians in charge agree that women should be able to exercise their constitutionally protected right to reproductive healthcare", Murray said.
"We didn't know at the time what it would be, but it turned out to be the vice president's tiebreaker", Isakson said.
Divisions over Planned Parenthood could also be a major sticking point in upcoming negotiations to fund the government, which is set to run out of money at the end of April.
For instance, Planned Parenthood officials had admitted that clinics had not followed the organization's procedures on important matters like fetal tissue transfers or ensuring that abortion procedures were not illegally altered for the goal of tissue harvesting.
While federal funding of abortion is blocked by the Hyde Amendment - except in cases of rape or incest, or to save the life of the woman - critics of Planned Parenthood argue that the nation's largest abortion provider's receipt of federal funds for non-abortion services amounts to little more than a shell game.