House vote to defund Planned Parenthood unlikely before recess

House vote to defund Planned Parenthood unlikely before recess
© Planned Parenthood

The House appears unlikely to vote on defunding Planned Parenthood before the August recess despite mounting pressure on Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerCrowley, Shuster moving to K Street On unilateral executive action, Mitch McConnell was right — in 2014 Bill Clinton jokes no one would skip Dingell's funeral: 'Only time' we could get the last word MORE (R-Ohio).

Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulOn unilateral executive action, Mitch McConnell was right — in 2014 Congress must step up to protect Medicare home health care Business, conservative groups slam Trump’s national emergency declaration MORE (R-Ky.) announced at an anti-abortion rally outside the Capitol on Tuesday that the Senate would vote to defund the group before leaving town for a five-week recess. And with the release of a third undercover video now targeting Planned Parenthood, a House bill to defund the group has reached 140 supporters.

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Still, a House vote is not expected anytime soon, a GOP leadership aide said Tuesday, arguing “the political reality” is that it doesn’t have enough support.

“In order to enact legislation to defund Planned Parenthood, we need more Republicans and Democrats in both the House and the Senate to support our efforts,” the aide said. “In order to get more support for our case, we have to investigate the organization and deliver the facts about their gruesome practices."

BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerCrowley, Shuster moving to K Street On unilateral executive action, Mitch McConnell was right — in 2014 Bill Clinton jokes no one would skip Dingell's funeral: 'Only time' we could get the last word MORE has forcefully condemned the Planned Parenthood videos, in which organization leaders are caught on hidden camera discussing aborted fetal tissue.

Immediately after the first video surfaced, Boehner ordered congressional investigations into the group. The House Energy and Commerce Committee has already begun its probe and has threatened to subpoena one of the Planned Parenthood officials who appears in the videos.

Since then, more than 140 House Republicans have signed onto a bill by Rep. Diane BlackDiane Lynn BlackLamar Alexander's exit marks end of an era in evolving Tennessee Juan Williams: The GOP's worsening problem with women How to reform the federal electric vehicle tax credit MORE (R-Tenn.) to immediately block funding for Planned Parenthood until investigations have ended.

Black said Tuesday she has met resistance from House leadership while asking them to take up her bill “immediately.”

“We still do not have, from the Speaker's office, a move-forward plan, but I'm continuing to gather sponsors on my bill,” she said in an interview with the "Laura Ingraham Show."  

“Of course the more that we can show the Speaker that there is support within our conference, the more likelihood it will come to the floor,” she said.

Around the same time, several House Republicans joined an anti-abortion rally outside the Capitol that drew GOP presidential candidates including Dr. Ben Carson and Sens. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzO'Rourke mulling another Senate run as well as presidential bid Texas senator introduces bill to produce coin honoring Bushes Trump working on labels for 2020 Dems: report MORE (R-Texas) and Paul.

"Of course we're going to vote again on legislation to defund Planned Parenthood. No one supports defunding this group more than the Speaker," Boehner spokeswoman Emily Schillinger said, adding that the House speaker supports the investigations as efforts to drive up support among lawmakers and the general public.

"The more Americans learn about Planned Parenthood's horrific practices, the easier it will be for Congress to defund them," she said.

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), who had initially said he wanted “all the facts” before legislative action, appearedto change course on Monday, when he voiced support for a moratorium on funding.

House GOP leadership have said “there is no disconnect” between the statements from Boehner and McCarthy and that both support defunding Planned Parenthood.

Any legislation to defund Planned Parenthood would be met with a veto from President Obama, whose administration has dismissed the videos as a smear campaign.

Planned Parenthood receives about $500 million annually from the federal government, a large amount of which is reimbursements from federal programs such as Medicaid for health services.

Under the Hyde Amendment, Planned Parenthood is banned from using federal funding for abortion services.

— Updated at 4:39 p.m.