GAO to look at Planned Parenthood, related groups’ federal funding

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Republican lawmakers announced Monday that the Government Accountability Office has agreed to look into Planned Parenthood and related organizations’ use of federal funding.

“The federal government providing funding to abortion providers is a serious problem in our nation,” said Tennessee Republican Rep. Diane Black in a statement. “I am pleased with the decision from GAO to investigate the use of taxpayer money designated to any abortion provider, particularly Planned Parenthood.”

“This independent study of how much and for what purpose these dollars are allocated to all abortion providers is necessary for Congress to ensure accountability and oversight,” she added.

In February Black, along with Texas Republican Rep. Pete Olson and Louisiana Republican Sen. David Vitter led a group of over 50 lawmakers in a call for the GAO to issue a report on how organizations that perform or promote abortion and receive federal funding use that funding, notably Planned Parenthood.

A GAO spokesman confirmed to The Daily Caller Monday that the auditing body had accepted their request.

Olson said he was “thrilled” that GAO agreed to look into the federal funding of these groups.

“Planned Parenthood performed a record 333,964 abortions last year – almost 1 million in the past three years,” Vitter added in a statement. “At the same time, they also received more federal taxpayer dollars than ever before – a record $542 million, an 11 percent increase over the past two years.”

“Planned Parenthood and other organizations that provide abortions clearly benefit from Uncle Sam, but there’s no accounting to prove how they actually use that money,” he continued. “This GAO report would shine a light on how our tax dollars are being spent.”

In 2010 GAO offered a report on the federal funds provided to organizations like Planned Parenthood from 2002 to 2009. The lawmakers requested an updated version of the 2010 report.

The GOP legislators in their February request sought data on all the affiliates of the Planned Parenthood, the International Planned Parenthood Federation, the Population Council, The Guttmacher Institute, Advocates for Youth, and the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States.

They specifically expressed interest in the amount of federal funding the organizations received, the allocating programs, the manner the funds were disbursed, the services they provided and the number of people served in each of those service categories.

According to New Jersey Republican Rep. Chris Smith, it is time for America to defund Planned Parenthood.

“It’s time for Americans and especially Congress to take a second look and defund Planned Parenthood. I’m pleased that the GAO will be investigating how much taxpayer money the abortion industry is receiving,” he concluded in a statement.

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