Sunday, August 7, 2016

Democrats Sacrifice Zika-Virus Research for Planned Parenthood!

by Alexandra DeSanctis August 4, 2016 3:24 PM @xan_desanctis

Senate Dems want Zika funding to be earmarked
for the abortion giant.

While campaigning in Florida on Tuesday, Democratic vice-presidential
candidate Tim Kaine attacked congressional Republicans for failing to
pass a funding bill that would have directed $1.1 billion toward research
to treat and prevent the Zika virus. According to the Orlando Sentinel:

Kaine . .called for federal action on fighting the Zika virus, which officials
on Monday said had reached South Florida via mosquitoes. Kaine said
Congress should pass a $1.1 billion bill to combat Zika without what he
called the “poison pill” of anti-abortion language added by House Repub-
licans. “Congress should not be in recess when Zika is advancing,” he
said. In reality, it was Senate Democrats who refused to pass the bill,
and there’s no “poison pill” to be found anywhere inside it. Instead, the
Democratic leadership is balking because the bill does not specifically
earmark a portion of funding for Planned Parenthood. While most of the
funding outlined in the bill would go to mosquito prevention and vaccine
research, a small segment is dedicated to public-health efforts.

According to Don Stewart, deputy chief of staff for Senate majority leader
Mitch McConnell, Senate Democrats chose to block the entire bill because
none of this small portion was earmarked for Planned Parenthood.

“The conference committee increased health-care block-grant funding
and provided guidance on who could receive the funding,” Stewart tells
National Review. “Planned Parenthood was not listed as a potential
recipient, and Democrats want them to be explicitly listed as a recipient,
even though the president’s initial request didn’t ask for any.”

RELATED: Florida’s Zika Season:

One More Menace In an Electorate That’s Already in a Sour Mood

Senate Democratic leaders Harry Reid and Chuck Schumer held
a press conference attempting to explain their decision shortly after
leading an effort to kill the bill. Reid claimed that women would have
nowhere to go to obtain birth control under the bill, but, in fact, nothing
in the legislation would cut any federal funding currently going to
Planned Parenthood. It simply does not add more funding in the
context of treating Zika.

Planned Parenthood’s executive director, Dawn Laguens, spoke along-
side Reid and Schumer, implying that it is more important for Planned
Parenthood to receive direct funding under the bill than it is to pass a
bill quickly. The Democratic leadership is balking because the bill does
not specifically earmark a portion of funding for Planned Parenthood.

A letter from Planned Parenthood to the Senate offices prior to the most
recent vote stated that “a vote against this bill will be seen as a vote for
women’s health care.” But a vote against the bill is actually vote against
women’s health care, particularly if the women in question have contracted
the Zika virus. And, even from the perspective of Senate Democrats, there
is no rational objection to the bill given that Planned Parenthood still would
receive as much federal funding as it did before the Zika virus became an
issue. But a compromise from Senate Democrats seems unlikely, given
their latest statements. “We would love for them to end that filibuster and
pass the bill, but it doesn’t sound like they’re prepared to do that,” Stewart
tells National Review.

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