Dems Praise Obama’s Effort To Prevent States From Defunding Planned Parenthood

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Juliegrace Brufke Capitol Hill Reporter
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Democrats in both chambers praised the Obama administration’s proposed rule aimed at preventing states from cutting funding to Planned Parenthood, a regulation Republicans view as an unconstitutional executive overreach.

The Health and Human Services rule would use Title X – federal funding used toward family planning as part of the United States Public Health Service Act – to prevent states from refusing to support the clinic. While health providers are technically prohibited from using Title X dollars toward abortions, several members of the pro-life community feel taxpayer dollars are indirectly funding the procedure by allowing clinics like Planned Parenthood to receive funding.

Numerous states pulled Planned Parenthood’s funding in the wake of a series of videos leaked showing Planned Parenthood doctors discussing harvesting fetal body parts, but that has not stopped a large number of Democrats from wanting to continue to grant them federal dollars.

“I mean it is outrageous that states across america are doing everything they can, like Republicans here, have been to cut off access to women’s health,” Democratic Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz told The Daily Caller News Foundation, adding she believes the GOP should stop focusing on Planned Parenthood, alleging Republicans are responsible for Congress’ impasse on Zika funding due language in the legislation to cut funding to the clinic. “It’s unacceptable and it should be against the rules.”

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid agreed with Wasserman Schultz, saying he thinks Republican’s argument it is a violation on state’s rights is wrong.

“How do Republicans explain what we do with the two million people who went to Planned Parenthood last year, and with Zika it will be more,” he told TheDCNF. “I don’t know why Republicans are so down on women being helped, it’s the only place they can go.”

GOP Tennessee Rep. Diane Black, a registered nurse, shot down Reid’s claim, adding she thinks Democrats are being shortsighted in their views on women’s health.

“I think my concern is that we have seen over and over again with this president, that he is in an unholy alliance with the abortion industry, and he now is, what I believe, stepping on states’ rights,” she told TheDCNF. “States should make that decision on what the best women’s health providers are – and in the state of Tennessee we’ve made that decision that it is health departments and federally qualified health centers because they provided a more comprehensive array of services for our women.”

Black added if the rule comes into fruition, she expects the Republican party to take action on to protect states’ rights.

“I haven’t decided yet exactly what we should do collectively as a body, but I would say their will be a reaction to his action,” she said.

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