Vice President Mike Pence was called once again to decide a tie-breaking vote in the Senate, this time to revoke a regulation from Obama’s time in office that blocked states from denying federal funds to abortion providers including Planned Parenthood. Just like past month when Pence had to decide the confirmation of Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, progressive Republican Senators Lisa Murkowski from Alaska, and Susan Collins from Maine were defectors, setting a 50-50 tie.
Murkowski and Collins both support Planned Parenthood and introduced a bill at the last Congress that aimed to block Republicans form de-funding the largest abortion provider in the country. The vote on Wednesday was under the Congressional Review Act that allows Congress to rescind policies with a majority vote in both chambers, signed by the President.
Senator Joni Ernst, from Iowa, and Congresswoman Diane Black, from Tennessee, issued the CRA legislation to revoke the regulation that takes away power from the states to direct where block-granted federal funds will go.
“State legislatures around the country have spoken out about their preference for prioritizing more comprehensive primary and preventative care providers for the receipt of Title X funding,”the two penned down in an op-ed for the Washington Examiner, “and their voice should be respected by bureaucrats in the federal government.”
“According to its 2014-2015 annual report, Planned Parenthood performed 323,999 abortion procedures in just one year. Taxpayers should not be forced to subsidize the abortion industry in this country,” they remarked. “Nor should they be forced to foot the bill for an organization like Planned Parenthood that has displayed such blatant disregard for human life.”