Obama sidesteps Tennessee law, gives Planned Parenthood $400,000
WEST MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE, July 5, 2012, (LifeSiteNews.com) – Months after Tennessee state and local officials chose to defund Planned Parenthood, the Obama administration has directly awarded the abortion provider a federal contract restoring some of the lost funds.
The administration has awarded Planned Parenthood in Memphis with $400,000 in Title X family planning funds.
The state’s legislature and Republican governor, Bill Haslam, took pains to transfer family planning dollars from facilities that perform abortions to other local hospitals and health centers. Local officials also opted to prioritize those who had not performed a procedure many of the state’s residents find morally objectionable.
Last November, Shelby County became the last county in the state to strip the abortion industry of taxpayer largesse after awarding Planned Parenthood’s grant to Christ Community Health Services (CCHS).
The federal grant represented little more than half the usual taxpayer-funded tab, which totaled $727,000 last year, according to Brian Harris, president of Tennessee Right to Life.
The Obama administration made a similar move in a different state last September, directly funding Planned Parenthood in New Hampshire to the tune of $1 million after legislators defunded the abortion giant.
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“This end run around the people of Tennessee will serve to underscore the urgent need to elect a pro-life president, Senate and Congress in November,” said Harris.
The federal grant was announced by Rep. Steven Cohen, D-TN, who said Planned Parenthood has been helping young women “lead happier, healthier lives for years.”
Rep. Cohen once equated those who campaigned against the president’s health care bill with Nazis repeating “a Big Lie just like Goebbels.”
Harris expressed disappointment and hope at the announcement. “We’ve done good work here in Tennessee electing pro-life majorities to the Legislature and Congress,” he said. “But all of that can apparently be undone by a single official unless we have a pro-life president and a pro-life senate solidly committed to defending the weakest and most vulnerable of all.”