Jeb Bush: 'The next president should defund Planned Parenthood'

GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush on Tuesday said the next president should defund Planned Parenthood.

In an on-stage interview at the Southern Baptist Forum, Bush was asked if Republicans should make funding for Planned Parenthood an issue as more controversial videos about its practices are released.

ADVERTISEMENT
“We should, and the next president should defund Planned Parenthood,” he said, adding that he defunded the non-profit when he served as governor of Florida.

Bush said the argument against that effort would be that it’s a “war on women.”

“You could take dollar for dollar — although I’m not sure we need half a billion dollars for women’s health issues — but if you took dollar for dollar, there are many extraordinarily fine community health organizations that exist to provide quality care for women on a wide variety of health issues,” he said.

The U.S. government, or any government, shouldn’t fund abortions, Bush said. The Hyde Amendment bans federal funding from being used for abortions, except in cases of rape, incest or when it's necessary to save a mother's life.

Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonClinton camp debates media strategy vs. Trump Five things Trump can do to regain momentum Jeb Bush: Reports of father supporting Clinton were 'inappropriate' MORE, the front-runner for the Democratic nomination, quickly fired back at Bush on Twitter for his remarks about the amount of federal funding for women's health services.

Democrats also pounced on the funding remark.

“Jeb Bush is sure about one thing — he wants to restrict access to affordable health care for women, which isn’t surprising considering his ‘shame and blame’ playbook. This backwards ideology isn’t only the exact opposite of what women need from their next president – it could put the health of millions of women in jeopardy,” said Kaylie Hanson, the director of women’s media for the Democratic National Committee.

On Capitol Hill, chatter has been growing about a possible government shutdown in October over Planned Parenthood funding. The White House has vowed that President Obama would veto any measure that cuts off the more than $500 million in federal funding the group receives each year.

“I don’t remember how many times we’ve had government shutdowns and budgets not passed,” Bush said Tuesday. “If I’m president, we’re going to respect the Constitution get back to regular order way where democracy works again where you submit a budget, you work with Congress, you pass a budget and in that budget, there will not be $500 million going to Planned Parenthood.”

His remark comes a day after GOP presidential frontrunner Donald TrumpDonald TrumpClinton camp debates media strategy vs. Trump Five things Trump can do to regain momentum Jeb Bush: Reports of father supporting Clinton were 'inappropriate' MORE said he'd be willing to force a government shutdown to defund Planned Parenthood.

On “The Hugh Hewitt” show, he was asked if he supports a shutdown, Trump said, “Well I can tell you this: I would.