House Passes Rep. Black’s Defund Planned Parenthood Act
To watch Congressman Black’s remarks on the House floor, click HERE or the image above
Washington, DC– Today Congressman Diane Black (R-TN-06), a nurse for more than 40 years and member of the Congressional Pro-Life Caucus, spoke on the House floor to urge passage of her legislation, the Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015. The bill would place an immediate moratorium on all federal funding to Planned Parenthood while Congress investigates the organization for potentially illegal actions. Under the legislation, funds would be reallocated to the more than 13,500 clinics nationwide that provide primary care to low-income and underserved populations and do not perform abortions. Additionally, the bill, as amended, would increase funding to community health centers by $235 million during this one-year period.
With the legislation now having passed the House, Congressman Black will urge a Senate vote on the bill. As she explained yesterday “I will be personally calling every Senator I know so that we can get this measure to the President’s desk.”
Following Congressman Black’s floor remarks, the Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015 passed by a bipartisan vote of 241 – 186. A transcript of Congressman Black’s speech is provided below:
Madam Speaker, as a nurse for more than 40 years and a believer in the God-given purpose of every human being I am passionately pro-life. But you know what? You don’t have to agree with me to support this bill.
No matter our views on abortion, or the party label beside our name – we all should have an interest in ensuring that laws are followed and that taxpayer dollars are spent responsibly. If a law is broken, particularly by those receiving government money, that should be remedied. That’s not a political statement. That is quite literally our job in Congress.
Two months ago, a series of undercover videos were released implicating Planned Parenthood in the illegal trafficking of aborted babies’ tissue and organs.
Now some of my colleagues have tried to dismiss these videos without ever watching them. I get it, It’s easier to try and discredit the source than to defend what’s happening on these tapes. Well, Madam Speaker, I did watch these videos and I saw full conversations of Planned Parenthood employees, in their own words, discussing potentially lawbreaking activities.
Congressional investigations are underway, but there are more than enough lingering questions to stop the money flow to this abortion-giant until our work is complete. For these reasons, I introduced the Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015.
This legislation enacts a one year moratorium on all federal money to Planned Parenthood. It does not reduce women’s health funding by a single dime. Instead, this legislation reallocates funding to the more than 13,500 facilities nationwide that provide true preventive care to those who need it most and do not perform abortions.
What’s more, Planned Parenthood can get the money back if they fully commit to women’s healthcare and stop performing abortions.
If there exists even a possibility that Planned Parenthood violated our laws – as I believe they did – then pro-life and pro-choice Members of Congress alike must act to reallocate funds now so that we’re not trying to chase down taxpayer dollars that already went out the door later.
This is about ensuring that laws are followed, that Americans know how their money is being spent, and that the conscience rights of taxpayers are respected.
I urge a yes vote on H.R. 3134 and I yield back the balance of my time.
Congressman Diane Black represents Tennessee’s 6th Congressional District. She has been a registered nurse for more than 40 years and serves on the House Ways and Means and Budget Committees