Defunding Planned Parenthood: Where do CA’s GOP Reps stand?

Defunding Planned Parenthood: Where do CA’s GOP Reps stand?

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We'd like to take this opportunity to address those who might take umbrage with the fact that the four individuals who composed this piece are men. Here at The Millennial Review we believe that abortion is a human rights issue, not a women's rights issue. Therefore, men have just as much right to speak up about it as women. 

And in case you are still wondering, this piece was endorsed by every woman who is a part of the team at The Millennial Review.


A collaborative piece by:
Nick Yanakas, Senior Social Policy Editor
Matthew Beimford, Data Analyst
Michael Bezoian, Senior Politics Editor
Rob Petrosyan, Senior Fiscal Policy Editor

The month of January marks the unfortunate anniversary of Roe V. Wade, an unconstitutional ruling which nationalized the issue of abortion and paved the way for millions upon millions of babies to be slaughtered. 2017 marks 44 years since that abominable decision, a decision that even Associate Justice Ginsburg admits was faulty at best.

Since Roe, Republicans have campaigned year after year on being pro-life. However, it is the opinion of many conservatives that at worst the Republican party is not a pro-life party and at best, they have failed to effectively take on the abortion industry.

They have an opportunity to change that perception now.

The Republicans in Washington have been given monopoly control of the federal government based on many campaign promises, chief among them that an originalist, pro-life justice would be appointed and confirmed to the Supreme Court and Planned Parenthood would be defunded.

With trifecta control of the government, the Republicans have no more excuses to fall back on.  No more of the Republicans having just “one half of one-third of the federal government” as former House Speaker John Boehner liked to note. No more of current House Speaker Paul Ryan talking the talk but not walking the walk. No more of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell seemingly hiding in the witness protection program as the nation’s largest abortion provider continues to get subsidized by the federal government to the tune of $500 million dollars a year.

Because The Millennial Review was founded in California, this article will serve to specifically address the Golden State’s 14 GOP House members and evaluate their pro-life record and rhetoric to determine who is really in this fight and who isn’t.

We begin in the state of Jefferson aka far northern California in the state’s first congressional district with Representative Doug Lamalfa.

Doug Lamalfa (R-Richvale)- Lamalfa has a 0% score from Planned Parenthood Action Fund. While in the House of Representatives, Lamalfa Co-sponsored the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (HR1797 2013). He also voted “Yea” for bills such as; Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act (HR3504 2015), Women’s Public Health and Safety Act (HR 3495), and No Taxpayers Funding for Abortion Act (HR7 2015).

Tom McClintock (R-Elk Grove)- McClintock has received a 0% score from Planned Parenthood Action Fund along with a 0% score from NARAL Pro-Choice America Group. In 2015, McClintock co-sponsored and voted “Yea” for the Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015 (HR3134 2015). He has also voted “Yea” for the Prohibiting Use of Federal Funds for Planned Parenthood (H.Amendment95 2011).

Paul Cook (R-Yucca Valley)- Cook has received a 50% score from Planned Parenthood Action Fund. While in the U.S. House of Representatives, Cook co-sponsored  and voted “Yea” for the Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015 (HR3134 2015). While serving in the California Legislature, Cook voted “Nay” on several important bills. Those included; Expands Cash Assistance Programs for Pregnant Teenagers (AB1640 2012), Authorize Registered Nurses to Dispense Contraceptives (AB2348 2012), Requiring Inclusion of Maternity Service in Health Coverage (AB1825 2010), and Required Maternity Services Coverage (AB98 2009).

Jeff Denham (R-Turlock)- Denham received a 0% score from Planned Parenthood Action Fund. Denham voted “Yea” for both the Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015 (HR3134 2015) and Prohibiting Use of Federal Funds for Planned Parenthood (H.Amendment95 2011). While in the California State Legislature, Denham voted “Nay” for Requiring Inclusion of Maternity Services in Health Coverage (AB1825 2010) and Required Maternity Services Coverage (AB98 2009).

David Valadao (R-Hanford)- Valadao received a 0% score from Planned Parenthood Action Fund. Valadao co-sponsored and voted “Yea” for Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015 (HR3134 2015). He also voted “Nay” on Expands Cash Assistance Programs for Pregnant Teenagers (AB1640, 2012) and Authorize Registered Nurses to Dispense Contraceptives (AB2348, 2012) while serving in the California State Legislature.

Devin Nunes (R-Tulare)- Nunes received a 0% score from the Planned Parenthood Action Fund and a 0% score from NARAL Pro-Choice America Group. Among many strong votes while in the House of Representatives, several substantial bills included; A “Yea” vote for Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015 (HR3134, 2015), a “Yea” vote for Prohibiting Use of Federal Funds for Planned Parenthood (H.Amendment95, 2011), Infant Mortality Pilot Programs (HR3470, 2010), Unborn Victims of Violence Act 2004 (HR1997, 2004), and Prohibit Partial-Birth/ Long Term Abortion Bill (HR760, 2003).

Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield)- McCarthy received a 0% score from the Planned Parenthood Action Fund and a 0% score from NARAL Pro-Choice America Group. McCarthy’s work in the House of Representatives included; A “Yea” vote for Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015 (HR3134, 2015), a “Yea” vote for Prohibiting Use of Federal Funds for Planned Parenthood (H.Amendment95, 2011), a “Yea” vote for Infant Mortality Pilot Programs (HR3470, 2010), a “Nay” vote for State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) Reauthorization (HR3162, 2007), and a “Nay” vote for Human Cloning Prohibition Act of 2007 (HR2560, 2007).            

Steve Knight (R-Palmdale) - Knight has a 0% score from Planned Parenthood Action Fund. According to Emily’s List, “[i]n May 2015, Knight voted for a bill that would prohibit abortions in cases where the probable age of the fetus is 20 weeks or later and would impose criminal penalties on doctors who violate the ban. It would provide exceptions for cases in which the woman's life is in danger as well as for pregnancies that are a result of rape. Additionally an exception would be provided for pregnancies resulting from rape or incest against a minor if the rape or incest had been previously reported to law enforcement or another government agency authorized to act on reports of child abuse.” In 2014, Steve Knight said, “[s]o, I’m a pro-life candidate. I’ve made no bones about it. I think that some people run from this issue and they say, oh boy don’t talk about this. I’ve made it very clear, I’m a pro-life candidate without exception [...] You can’t go in there and say you’re pro-life, except in these cases, or except in this case, or except in this case.”

Ed Royce (R-Fullerton) - Royce has a 0% score from Planned Parenthood Action Fund. He voted “Yea” on HR 3134 (which was titled the Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015). An affirmative vote on this bill would end federal funding for Planned Parenthood for one year.

Ken Calvert (R-Corona) - Calvert has a 0% score from Planned Parenthood Action Fund. According to the same source, he also has a 0% score from NARAL Pro-Choice America.  He voted “Yea” on HR 3134.

Mimi Walters (R-Laguna Niguel) - Walters has a 0% score from Planned Parenthood Action Fund. According to the same source, she also has a 0% score from NARAL Pro-Choice America. She voted “Yea” on HR 3134.

Dana Rohrabacher (R-Costa Mesa) - Rohrbacher has a 0% score from Planned Parenthood Action Fund. According to the same source, he also has a 0% score from NARAL Pro-Choice America. He voted “Yea” on HR 3134. Additionally, he released a scathing statement about Planned Parenthood after it was revealed that Planned Parenthood engaged in the illegal sale of baby parts.

Darrell Issa (R-Vista) - Issa has a 0% score from Planned Parenthood Action Fund. According to the same source, he also has a 0% score from NARAL Pro-Choice America. He voted “Yea” on HR 3134.

Duncan Hunter (R-Lakeside) - Hunter has a 0% score from Planned Parenthood Action Fund. According to the same source, he also has a 0% score from NARAL Pro-Choice America. He voted “Yea” on HR 3134.


Fiscal Implications of Defunding Planned Parenthood

Planned Parenthood has rightfully been an organization under scrutiny, ranging from its status as the largest abortion provider in the country, to its numerous scandals, most recently, the harvest and sale of baby parts from aborted fetuses that made headlines in 2015. While there are no shortages of moral reasons to defund Planned Parenthood, there are also fiscal implications. Namely, why should a private organization (that half the country detests) receive government subsidies to continue it’s operations. Is the abortion industry ‘too big to fail’ as well? Aren’t we supposed to be a free society built upon the free enterprise system where you rise and fall as a business enterprise on your own merits and ability to attract demand from consumers in the marketplace? If Planned Parenthood is as important to women’s health as they say they are then wouldn’t they be just fine without being subsidized with taxpayer money? Planned Parenthood receives over $500 million in government grants, which funds about 40 percent of its operations.

Many supporters of Planned Parenthood point to the fact that government funds aren’t directly allowed to be used for abortions and that only three percent of Planned Parenthood’s services are abortions. However, those statistics, while technically true, are also very misleading. While it is true that abortions consist of three percent of Planned Parenthood’s services, this figure does not take into account cost, and the fact that an abortion costs much more than a majority of Planned Parenthood’s services. Most of Planned Parenthood’s services consist of STD testing or contraceptives, which likely cost about $10-20, whereas an abortion in the first trimester would cost at least $1500, and second and third trimester abortions would likely cost much more. With that important facet taken into account, that small percentage quickly transforms into a rather large sector of the budget pie for the organization.

Some would say that we aren’t subsidizing abortion itself but the other services that Planned Parenthood performs. However that isn’t really the case since the public money is placed in the same pie as the private money that is raised by Planned Parenthood, there in lies opportunity cost. Planned Parenthood knows that it’s less objectionable services are fully covered by the government, so they use more of the private money for abortions. Whether directly or indirectly, the government ends up funding an organization that spends a significant percentage of its money on abortions.

The case against Planned Parenthood is overwhelming. On top of the moral plight it represents to our society, having performed millions of abortions since Roe, it is beyond the pale that a private organization that half the population disdains would receive federal subsidies.

The Trump administration is already off to a good start in this regard; on the first monday of his presidency it was announced that the US would be reinstating the Reagan-era ‘Mexico City Policy’ which bars federal funds from going to foreign organizations that perform or promote abortions. But the Republicans have a golden opportunity to take a stand and defund Planned Parenthood here at home. With monopoly control of all three branches of the federal government, there is no excuse for the Republicans not to act. In his inauguration address, President Trump referenced the “all talk, no action” politicians and how “the time for empty talk is over. Now arrives the hour of action.”

Well, let’s see it. Take action.

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