Until yesterday, the U.S. Senate had never passed a bill defunding Planned Parenthood. The House of Representatives has voted to defund Planned Parenthood many times. But in the Senate, the vote had always failed. As recently as 2011, a vote to defund Planned Parenthood failed in the Senate, 42-58. Planned Parenthood had successfully painted itself as a trusted and necessary provider of women’s healthcare – and a powerful political action committee that politicians should fear.
That has changed.
Yesterday, the United States Senate passed legislation (expected to be easily approved by the House) that defunds Planned Parenthood. The bill also repeals the core elements of Obamacare – including the employer and individual mandates – a law that is compelling both employers and individuals to pay for abortion-inducing drugs and even surgical abortions in violation of their conscience.
For all the frustration many have had with Congress, they got it right yesterday. They got it done by using a budget reconciliation process that allows the Senate to send a bill to the President’s desk with a simple majority and avoid obstruction by pro-abortion Senators.
What changed between the failed 2011 vote and yesterday? Planned Parenthood is losing its brand. Here are some of the reasons the debate shifted over the last four years:
- We now know that Planned Parenthood has been audited in nine states, with all nine showing overbilling and improper claims to Medicaid -- totaling over $12 million.
- We have heard from Planned Parenthood whistleblowers, like Abby Johnson and Sue Thayer, who have revealed Planned Parenthood’s focus on its bottom line instead of women’s health.
- We have seen with our own eyes the apparently illegal and definitely callous videos of Planned Parenthood officials haggling over the prices of baby body parts. The videos – In spite of Planned Parenthood’s favorite talking point that they have been “discredited” and are “heavily edited” – have been authenticated by leading forensic experts.
- We now know that Planned Parenthood has failed to report the sexual abuse of young girls at least a dozen times, often performing abortions, receiving payment, and sending them right back to their abusers.
- Planned Parenthood’s propaganda machine is now being forced to answer questions about its many deceptions that it never thought it would have to answer. And the more people know the truth about Planned Parenthood’s barbarism, the less they like Planned Parenthood.
And perhaps as importantly, Americans – and our elected officials – now understand that Planned Parenthood is not a necessary evil. Of the over 187,000 Medicaid providers in America, only 665 are Planned Parenthoods. And there are thousands of federally qualified health centers and rural health clinics, many of which provide far more comprehensive care than Planned Parenthood. Some of them, unlike Planned Parenthood, actually provide mammograms.
President Obama has already announced that he will veto this bill. But the fact that he will have to do so is an historic step. It means that Americans who object to their forced partnership with America’s leading abortionist can have hope that this will soon end. And for Planned Parenthood, it means that their half a billion dollars in annual contributions from unwilling American taxpayers is hanging by a single vote – the one in the White House.
Sometime soon, Planned Parenthood will not be able to depend on the American taxpayers to subsidize its destruction of over 300,000 unborn children every year. Yesterday’s vote paves the way to that victory.