WASHINGTON --- U.S. Congressman Mike Pence today issued the following statement regarding the release of a new Government Accountability Office (GAO) report revealing that the Planned Parenthood Federation of America received $657.1 million in taxpayer dollars from Fiscal Year 2002 to Fiscal Year 2009. The largest source of these funds ($342.1 million) was the Title X family planning program.
"It is morally wrong to end an unborn human life by abortion. But it is also morally wrong to take the taxpayer dollars of millions of pro-life Americans and use those funds to promote abortion.
"This report confirms that the largest abortion provider in America is being bankrolled by American taxpayers. In these tough economic times, there is simply no reason why taxpayer money should go to fund the activities of abortion providers and equip them with the resources they need to end innocent human life.
"We must stop providing taxpayer dollars to abortion providers through Title X. We must put an end to Americans unwillingly providing financial support to the abortion industry. The time has come to deny any and all federal funding to Planned Parenthood by passing the Title X Abortion Provider Prohibition Act."
The Title X Family Planning program was enacted in 1970 as Title X of the Public Health Service Act. Title X is the only federal grant program that provides individuals with comprehensive family planning and related preventive health services.
Congressman Pence introduced The Title X Abortion Provider Prohibition Act (H.R. 614), a bill prohibiting the distribution of Title X family planning money to entities that use abortion as a method of family planning. The bi-partisan bill has 93 co-sponsors.
Originally, family planning services were not allowed to include abortions and currently federal dollars are not used directly for abortions. However, over the years, the subsidy of abortion providers under the umbrella of family planning has been gradually accepted.
Current law prohibits the use of Title X family planning funds "in programs where abortion is a method of family planning;" and current regulations require some form of separation between federally-funded family planning services and abortions. However, the current regulations do not contain a descriptive standard of what constitutes "separation." They only require the level of separation to be more than "mere bookkeeping."
When Title X money goes to clinics that provide both abortions and family planning services, even though the money cannot directly fund abortions, it is being used to offset operational costs with federal funds, freeing up money to promote and provide abortions.
Rep. Pence, Rep. Pete Olson (R-TX) and 29 other Members requested the GAO study, which can be accessed at http://gao.gov/products/GAO-10-533R.