U.S. Congressman Mike Pence deliver a speech on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday evening in support of his amendment that eliminates federal funding for Planned Parenthood. The following is the text of his speech.
“I believe that ending an innocent human life is morally wrong.
“I also believe it is morally wrong to take the taxpayer dollars of millions of pro-life Americans and use them to fund organizations that provide and promote abortion-like Planned Parenthood of America.
“The headlines and years of investigations speak for themselves.
“In 2002, Planned Parenthood was found civilly liable in Arizona for failure to report statutory rape.
“In 2008 it violated reporting laws in Indiana and California.
“In 2009 it instructed a girl in Tennessee to lie about her age so she could get an abortion without her parents’ knowledge.
“Recently in California, Washington, New Jersey, and New York, Planned Parenthood clinics have been accused of fraudulent accounting or overbilling practices.
“And last week, undercover videos showed Planned Parenthood employees apparently willing to aid human sex traffickers by coaching them on how to falsify documents and secure secret abortions for their underage prostitutes.
“As the father of two teenage daughters, there are not words strong enough to portray my contempt of this pattern of apparent fraud and abuse by Planned Parenthood.
“And the American people deserve to know, Planned Parenthood is not only the largest abortion provider in America. It is also the largest recipient of taxpayer funding under Title X.
“According to their latest annual report, Planned Parenthood received more than $363 million in taxpayer dollars, while also boasting of performing an unprecedented 324,008 abortions.
“The Pence Amendment would deny any and all federal funding to Planned Parenthood Federation of America and its affiliates for the rest of this fiscal year.
“Let me be clear, my amendment would not cut funding for health services. It would simply block those funds already in the bill from subsidizing America’s largest abortion provider.
“Now, I am aware that Title X family planning funds are eliminated in this bill, but eliminating Title X funding has never been my goal. I support the important work of Title X clinics across the country that provide breast cancer screenings, HIV testing, counseling, and other valuable family planning services.
“The reality is that Planned Parenthood receives hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars from federal funding sources other than Title X. Of the $363 million they received last year, according to the GAO, only $53 million of that was from Title X.
“My focus has and will remain on denying taxpayer dollars to Planned Parenthood or any organization that provides or promotes abortion as a means of birth control.
“Some consider the Pence Amendment a ‘war on Planned Parenthood,’ but this is not about Planned Parenthood’s right to be in the abortion business. Sadly, abortion on demand is legal in America. This debate is about who pays for it.
“Only in Washington, D.C. are you declaring war on an organization by simply refusing to pay for it with taxpayer dollars.
“Nobody is saying that Planned Parenthood can’t be the leading advocate of abortion on demand in America…but why do I have to pay for it?
“Nobody is saying that Planned Parenthood cannot continue to be the largest abortion provider in America, but why do millions of pro-life taxpayers have to pay for it?
“I long for the day that Roe v. Wade is sent to the ash heap of history, when we move past the broken hearts and broken lives of the past 38 years, but as this debate rages on…let us at least respect the overwhelming consensus of the American people and end taxpayer support for abortion providers once and for all.
“This is the moment. Now is the time. Support the Pence Amendment. I urge my colleagues to take a stand for taxpayers, take a stand against a pattern of corruption, and take a stand for young women in crisis pregnancies who deserve access to unbiased and compassionate health services. Let’s end taxpayer support of Planned Parenthood.”