Rep. Heath Shuler joined most Republicans and 10 other Democrats today to vote in favor of legislation, which he co-sponsored, stripping federal funds from Planned Parenthood and ending a federal family-planning program. The amendment passed the House of Representatives 240-185.
The legislation — added to the House’s funding bill — removes family planning funding from any organization that provides access to abortions. The legislation also ends the federal Title X program, a 41-year-old federal program that provides family planning services, particularly to low-income families. Seven Republicans voted against the bill. For such a bill to become law, it still must pass the Senate and overcome a potential Presidential veto, both of which appear unlikely.
Federal rules already prohibit Planned Parenthood from using government funds for abortions. When asked by Xpress earlier about his co-sponsorship of anti-abortion legislation, and whether he believed the current rules were sufficient, Shuler said “This is the law, and it codifies the existing law that we have.”
Shuler’s office has not yet responded to requests for a statement.
— David Forbes, senior news reporter