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Congressman Diane Black

Representing the 6th District of Tennessee

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Congressman Black Reintroduces the Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2017

January 6, 2017
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Diane Black (R-TN-06), a registered nurse and member of the recently concluded Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives, reintroduced H.R. 354 today – the Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2017. The legislation would prioritize preventive healthcare over elective abortion by placing a one year moratorium on all federal funding for Planned Parenthood, including its affiliates and associated clinics, until such time as Planned Parenthood certifies that it will not perform elective abortions or give funding to entities that do. The bill was introduced with the support of 127 cosponsors.

The legislation would instead redirect federal dollars to the more than 13,500 community health centers nationwide that provide a broader range of healthcare services to women (e.g., mammograms) and do not perform abortions. The bill provides $235 million in funding for community health centers, in addition to the funding that would be reallocated from Planned Parenthood. Black released the following statement:

“Planned Parenthood’s grand deception is quickly collapsing. For too long, this organization has cashed in on our tax dollars – to the tune of more than $550 million a year – all while performing more than 320,000 abortions during the same length of time. Abortion is not healthcare, yet it is the centerpiece of Planned Parenthood’s mission. What’s more, legitimate questions persist about Planned Parenthood’s compliance with federal law and regulatory guidelines, as evidenced by the work of our Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives and the Senate Judiciary Committee’s recent decision to refer Planned Parenthood to both the Department of Justice and the FBI,” said Congressman Diane Black. “Our unified pro-life government is proof that Americans have rejected Planned Parenthood’s callous extremism. Now, it is our time to act. Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards should consider the introduction of this bill as her notice: the days of her organization receiving a free ride from taxpayers and a blind eye from Washington are coming to an end.”

Congressman Black added,  “From my years on the frontlines of the pro-life movement, I know the scare tactics that Planned Parenthood will use when speaking about this bill, so let me be very clear: My legislation does not cut a single dime from public health funding. In fact, this bill provides an additional $235 million for our nation’s community health centers. For Planned Parenthood or others to claim that our legislation blocks access to preventive care is an outright lie. This is about promoting true women’s healthcare over elective abortion and honoring the conscience rights of American taxpayers who don’t want their tax dollars used to fund a scandal-ridden abortion enterprise.”

Background: Hailed as “the abortion lobby’s worst nightmare” by pro-life group Susan B. Anthony List, Congressman Diane Black has spent her career fighting for the health and dignity of mothers and their unborn babies, first as an emergency room nurse and now in Congress. The very first bill that she introduced as a Member of Congress, H. Con. Res. 36 (112th Congress), would have defunded Planned Parenthood in a short term spending bill. Since then, the former Tennessee Right to Life Legislator of the Year has continued her efforts to defend our most vulnerable as the author of several landmark pro-life bills including the Title X Abortion Provider Prohibition Act and last year’s House-passed Conscience Protection Act. Black serves as a member of the Ways and Means Health Subcommittee and is the newly elected interim Chairman of the House Budget Committee.  

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