Abortion, Issues

Last minute Obama order forces states to tax fund Planned Parenthood

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Photo: American Life League/Flickr (cc by-nc 2.0)

Photo: American Life League/Flickr (cc by-nc 2.0)

In a last-ditch effort to stick it to his detractors, Barack Obama has issued a mandate prohibiting states from cutting off taxpayer funding to Planned Parenthood:

The final version of the rule, issued by the Department of Health and Human Services on Wednesday, requires states to distribute dollars from Title X of the Public Health Service Act without taking into account whether recipient clinics perform abortions.

The edict is set to go into effect Jan. 18, two days before the presidential inauguration of Donald Trump.

Title X dollars cannot be used to directly subsidize abortions, but they can be put toward the fixed costs of running a clinic, such as staffing and facility maintenance. Planned Parenthood receives around $60 million annually from Title X grants.

Rep. Diane Black (R-Tenn.) said she isn’t surprised by Obama’s move:

“We should not be surprised that his administration would lash out with this eleventh hour power grab on the way out the door, but I am certain this rule will not stand for long,” Ms. Black said in a statement. “Come next year, our pro-life majorities in Congress will be positioned to work with President-Elect Trump and pro-life nominee for Secretary of Health and Human Services, Dr. Tom Price, to not only roll back this latest overreach but also to enact new legal protections for these most vulnerable members of our society.”

Liberals continue to insist that Planned Parenthood provides essential health services like cancer screenings and STI testing and treatment to “vulnerable patients.” However, the numbers show that Planned Parenthood’s health care services are actually dwindling:

According to annual reports released by Planned Parenthood, the number of health care services its clinics provided from 2012 to 2014 dropped by 10 percent, from approximately 10.6 million to 9.5 million. Although nearly 3 million patients visited Planned Parenthood clinics in 2012, that number fell to 2.5 million in 2014.

Despite a nationwide abortion downtrend, the number of abortions performed at Planned Parenthood clinics has remained steady or increased. Planned Parenthood performed just under 200,000 abortions in 2001, and that number ballooned to more than 333,000 by 2011.

The fact is that Planned Parenthood is America’s largest abortion business, and states should have the ability to choose how to allocate resources at the local level.

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