Yesterday evening, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 3170, the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Act, by a vote of 219 to 208. The Appropriations Bill comes to the House floor every year and includes the budget for the following fiscal year in the District of Columbia. As a result of yesterday’s vote, Americans nationwide will now be funding abortions in D.C. starting in January 2010.
Pro-life leaders who opposed the bill included Todd Tiarht (R-KS), Bart Stupak (D-MI), Lincoln Davis (D-TN), Kathy Dahlkemper (D-PA), Michele Bachmann (R-MN), Virginia Foxx (R-NC), Jean Schmidt (R-OH), Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), as well as Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) and Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA).
As Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser pointed out yesterday, the bill did not pass without considerable resistance from pro-life leaders on both sides of the aisle. Pro-life Representatives Todd Tiahrt (R-KS) and Lincoln Davis (D-TN) worked for weeks in committee to restore a ban on taxpayer-funded abortion in D.C (formerly known as the Dornan Amendment). Their bipartisan amendment, the Tiahrt/Davis amendment, was blocked from even receiving a vote in House Resolution 644, which also barred votes on amendments dealing with other social issues.
The blocked vote for the Tiahrt/Davis amendment is just another way the pro-abortion leadership in Congress is working to silence pro-life voices. As a result, now American taxpayers will pay the price, literally, for abortions in the District of Columbia. Such an increase in funding is catastrophic for the unborn population in Washington, D.C., as it will cause the deaths of at least 1,000 more unborn children each year. According to Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) the decision to block votes for the amendment was done in an attempt to save members from “having to cast politically painful votes.” However, Rep. Bart Stupak (D-MI), decried the actions of the pro-abortion leadership, saying that by denying a chance to vote on restoring a traditional ban on taxpayer funded abortion in the nation’s capital, the leadership effectively “muzzle[d] the voices of pro-lifers.” The absence of a ban also goes against over thirty years of consensus from the American people, who have consistently reported they disagree with having their tax dollars used for abortions.
While this is a blow for the pro-life movement in general, the courage and commitment shown by pro-life representatives in Congress, Democrats and Republicans alike, is inspiring. Their audacity and daring strengthens the bipartisan resolution of the movement and serves as a light to the majority of Americans who continue to believe in the fundamental right to Life!