A bill to defund Planned Parenthood for one year passed Friday in the U.S. House. That bill has been sent to the Senate.
Budget discussions are underway in Congress and Planned Parenthood could be a part of a compromise. Senator Roy Blunt (R-Missouri) says freezing funds to the organization might be useful in budget negotiations.
“I think it’s perfectly fine if there’s more debate and more discussion of Planned Parenthood as it relates to the budget. At some point, there are some times when you have to make every effort so that people understand that every effort is being made,” said Blunt.
Blunt thinks a spending bill can be accomplished in time to avoid a government shutdown on October 1. He thinks the tougher issue will be lawmakers agreeing on spending.
“We will have some kind of language and we are still discussing on how to do that and what the language will be. That’s why this other bill to have a one-year moratorium may be a solution. I’m not sure,” said East central Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-Missouri). “Harry Reid has refused to pass a budget over there. We’ve got half of our budget bills passed and the other half are ready to pass.”
Republicans want to defund Planned Parenthood for one year to investigate the organization’s procedures and see if any laws have been broken. Planned Parenthood has been at the center of an undercover video scandal, which questions whether it sells fetal tissue for profit.
As part of budget negotiations, President Obama wants Republicans to scrap a tax break for private equity managers and use the funds for domestic and national security.
Missouri’s members of Congress voted along party lines on the proposal to defund Planned Parenthood, with Republicans favoring it and Democrats against it, except for St. Louis-area Republican Congresswoman Ann Wagner, who did not cast a vote on the bill.
Luetkemeyer is not sure when the next spending bill expires and thinks that will also be a compromise.