Planned Parenthood now under nationwide investigation by GAO, Congressmen announce
WASHINGTON, D.C., August 5, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The Government Accountability Office (GAO) will investigate every dollar of federal funding going to Planned Parenthood, as well as other organizations that support the liberalization of abortion laws, for potential fraud.
The GAO will investigate the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF), the Guttmacher Institute, the Sex Information and Education Council of the United States (SIECUS), the Population Council, and Advocates for Youth.
The “comprehensive” report will list every service performed and every federal dollar allocated, four Congressmen announced on Monday afternoon.
“It's time for Americans and especially Congress to take a second look and defund Planned Parenthood,” said Congressman Chris Smith, R-NJ. “Hopefully this will help us finally put an end to U.S. taxpayer support, funding and complicity with this violence against children.”
The government watchdog's decision comes more than five months after 72 Congressmen asked the GAO to investigate Planned Parenthood in a letter dated February 21.
“Despite the best and slickest market branding money can buy, the stubborn fact remains that Planned Parenthood clinics are among the most dangerous places on Earth for a child,” Rep. Smith said. “It is deeply troubling that despite the fact that Planned Parenthood claims direct responsibility for killing over 6 million unborn babies – including a record 333,964 abortions in 2011 alone, they still receive taxpayer money – since Obama's election and U.S. subsidies to the abortion industry at home and abroad, have significantly increased.”
Senator David Vitter of Louisiana noted Planned Parenthood's revenues saw “an 11 percent increase over the past two years.”
The organization performed a record number of abortions and received a record amount of taxpayer funding in 2012, $542.4 million.
“Planned Parenthood and other organizations that provide abortions clearly benefit from Uncle Sam, but there's no accounting to prove how they actually use that money,” Vitter said. “This GAO report would shine a light on how our tax dollars are being spent."
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Pro-life advocates have long said the abortion provider may be illegally using the federal, state, and local funds to underwrite abortions, something prohibited at the federal level by the Hyde Amendment.
Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast (PPGC) recently agreed to a $4.3 million Medicaid fraud settlement, a complaint that included refunding $1.4 million of fraud to the state of Texas. According to state Attorney General Greg Abbott, PPGC falsified records to use government funds for abortion follow-up visits, as well as charging for services it never provided.
The Alliance Defending Freedom said in a report released last year that Planned Parenthood had committed between $88 and $99 million in fraud and abuse.
"Federal tax dollars are legally prohibited from being used for abortions. Under the U.S. Constitution, the Obama administration has a duty to enforce these laws,” said Congressman Pete Olson, R-TX. “And under that same Constitution, Congress has a duty to ensure that the executive branch follows the law of the land.”
The Obama administration has largely energized its supporters on the Left by side-stepping legislative oversight and implementing its agenda through executive orders, federal regulations, or other bureaucratic means.
“I look forward to reviewing the results and ultimately, mobilizing the support needed to stop federal funding of abortion providers once and for all,” said Congresswoman Diane Black, R-TN.