The Senate recently approved the massive COVID-19 $1.9 trillion relief package, which will be of concern to pro-life Americans who want to make sure that their taxes are not going to support abortion or Planned Parenthood.
Known as “America’s Rescue Plan,” the bill included a staggering number of social programs and expenditures, like improving the government finances of cities and states, assisting with childcare, and investing in transit and other infrastructure. Some officials believe that this bill could decrease poverty by a third.
But what about the issue of life?
According to many reports, this bill does not include the Hyde Amendment, which is an appropriations measure that prevents taxpayer funds from going to support abortions with a few limited exceptions (rape, incest and life of the mother).
Removing the Hyde Amendment has been a dream of liberals for years. A recent USA Today op-ed makes that clear, with the author (a physician), stating, “(Abortion) is a right everyone should be able to access. We can’t get there unless the Biden administration and Congress do away with the discriminatory Hyde Amendment.”
This COVID relief package may be the first salvo in what may turn out as a long and contested fight over the future of abortion funding in this country.
In an official statement, Mississippi Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith wrote, “The majority also defeated amendments supported by Hyde-Smith to uphold the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits the use of taxpayer funding for abortion services. She also cosponsored an amendment to stop increased Medicare reimbursements for hospitals in all-urban states, which would disadvantage rural states like Mississippi. It also failed to pass.”
Montana Senator Steve Daines expressed a similar sentiment, writing on Twitter, “Preventing taxpayer dollars from being used to fund abortions is something a majority of Americans agree with.”
However, pro-life supporters on Capitol Hill were able to score a victory regarding Planned Parenthood’s eligibility for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).
As reported by Senator Rand Paul, the bill sent to the Senate by the House individualized every Planned Parenthood so that the many affiliate offices could qualify for PPP. However, this change was not in the spirit of the “original congressional intent.”
Rand began the process of appealing to the Senate parliamentarian for a change. But before the parliamentarian could rule, pro-abortion supporters and amended the bill to remove that provision.
This makes sense. Any Planned Parenthood affiliate office in financial trouble should be able to lean on the corporate office for support. As a business, Planned Parenthood raked in a shocking $1,641.4 billion in its fiscal year running between 2019-2020 and reported assets totaling $2,341.2 billion. However, the abortion business is usually rather stingy about sharing any of its war chest with any of the affiliate offices.
“America’s Rescue Plan” may help some, but likely not preborn babies.
Photo from RozenskiP / Shutterstock.com