Legislation to prohibit Planned Parenthood and other abortion-on-demand providers from receiving taxpayer funding was introduced yesterday as House Bill 2405 – the Whole Woman’s Health Funding Priorities Act.
“Across the United States, Planned Parenthood performs an abortion every 95 seconds on 91 percent of all the pregnant mothers that walk through their doors,” said Representative Daryl Metcalfe (R-Butler), prime sponsor of the bill. “For every one adoption referral made by America’s largest abortion-on-demand provider, 391 babies are aborted. Each year, Planned Parenthood aborts more than 320,000 innocent lives and over 16,000 of those abortions occur in Pennsylvania.”
Focused on improving the quality of health care for women, the HB 2405 does not reduce the level of public funding allocated for woman’s health services and is completely consistent with existing state law that prohibits taxpayer funded abortions. The legislation would:
- Direct the Pennsylvania Department of Health to prioritize authorized family planning funding to health care entities that can best provide comprehensive health care to women.
- Give public entities such as health departments the highest funding priority, followed by non-public hospitals and federally qualified health centers; rural health clinics and lastly, non-public health providers that can provide primary “whole woman” care.
- Prohibit the Department of Health to contract with or provide grants to any entity that performs non-federally qualified abortions.
- Grant the Pennsylvania Attorney General full jurisdiction to enforce the provisions of this legislation.
“Regardless of their position on abortion, Pennsylvania taxpayers must no longer be forced to subsidize the loss of innocent lives,” said Metcalfe. “In reality, women in Pennsylvania will be healthier and the children safer when we permanently defund Planned Parenthood and its anti-family agenda.”
The Pennsylvania Catholic Conference (PCC) is reviewing the just-introduced legislation. Francis Viglietta, PCC’s director of social concerns, says he supports the bill in concept. “If the real concern is helping women access true medical care such as breast cancer screening or testing for STDs, then why don’t the taxpayers give the money to the providers whose primary goal is doing just that?” said Viglietta. “There are qualified providers of women’s health in Pennsylvania that are independent from abortion. Women will still have access to the care they need and the taxpayers will not support a full-time abortion provider.”