Vitter demands ‘light’ on how abortion providers use federal funding

Vitter said his comments were prompted by the Government Accountability Office's (GAO) recent decision to investigate the use of federal funding allocated to Planned Parenthood and other organizations. Vitter said he and Reps. Diane Black (R-Tenn.) and Pete Olson (R-Texas) called for the report earlier this year, but that the GAO has not announced the full scope of the investigation because it’s in the beginning stages.

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“This GAO report will shine a light on how our tax dollars are being spent,” Vitter said. 

Lawmakers have ensured that federal funds cannot be used to pay for abortions, but these organizations provide other medical procedures, for which federal funds can be used.

Vitter complained that Planned Parenthood’s funding has increased in recent years.

“Planned Parenthood performed a record 333,964 abortions last year — almost 1 million in the past three years,” Vitter said. “At the same time, they also received more federal taxpayer dollars than ever before — a record $542 million, an 11 percent increase over the past two years.”

Democrats defend the spending because Planned Parenthood provides many preventative healthcare services for low-income women, such as cancer screenings.