Your Tax Dollars At Work: $600K for PPNNE

With a nod to Cornerstone Action, and with full disclosure that I’m a Cornerstone communications consultant, let me link you to this morning’s headline from the Cornerstone blog: “Title X Grantees Announced.” Among the recipients of this federally-disbursed family planning money, with no messy intermediate stop at the New Hampshire Executive Council: Planned Parenthood of Northern New England.

From Cornerstone’s post:

[The federal Department of Health and Human Services] has announced grant awards for Title X family planning funds for the grant period of April 1st  2019- March 31st  2020 and Planned Parenthood of Northern New England will be the recipient of $600,000 of taxpayer money.

As you may recall, President Trump’s new rule was rumored to prohibit federal taxpayer dollars to go to organizations that promote and administer abortion as a form of birth control.

…Not satisfied with federal dollars, Planned Parenthood continues their fight to secure your state taxpayer dollars 

https://www.nhcornerstone.org/latest-news/title-x-grantees-announced/

This round of 90 family planning grants for fiscal year 2019 does include some recipients of an abortion-free persuasion who had not received Title X money before, and it includes as always a lot of federally-qualified health centers which do not perform abortions. But please, don’t let anyone tell you that abortion providers have been cut out of Title X. It just ain’t so.

Quick review: Title X [that’s Roman numeral ten, not letter X] is a federal program that funds “family planning” efforts. Title X funds, while federal, are usually block-granted to states, and the states decide which contractors can most effectively carry out the Title X requirements. Abortion is explicitly excluded from Title X activity.

That’s how it’s usually (not always) done in New Hampshire, with the state Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) receiving the federal money, then seeking bids from contractors and submitting the resulting contracts to the Executive Council for approval. It’s common for up to eleven contracts to be awarded in New Hampshire, with each contractor covering a different part of the state. Most of the contractors are federally-qualified health centers, but three are abortion providers: the Equality Center in Concord, the Lovering Center in Greenland, and PPNNE.

Each of those abortion providers solemnly swears as part of the Title X contract that none of the money will be used for abortion. That’s the extent of the firewall. To my knowledge, no one has figured out how to divvy up the money between the abortion and non-abortion use for the utilities, equipment, office space, and staffing of a facility.

Therefore, taxpayers wanting to divest completely from involvement in the abortion industry are out of luck. You’d think a $23 million agency like PPNNE could figure out a way to separate out abortion from authentic health care: separate facilities, staff, accounts. But no. You’ve got civil rights, but the right not to subsidize abortion providers isn’t on the list.

There are two New Hampshire grantees in the latest round announced by the feds: the state HHS department, which will get $800,000 for Title X, and PPNNE, which has a $600,000 grant all to itself.

from https://www.hhs.gov/opa/grants-and-funding/recent-grant-awards/index.html

The state HHS grant for Title X will go through the usual state contract bidding process, ending with an Executive Council vote that will probably hand over the money to the usual contractors. (I’m guessing a 4-1 vote, but don’t hold me to that.)

The PPNNE Title X grant, on the other hand, goes directly to PPNNE. Does that mean PPNNE won’t reach for more money from general funds in the state budget, now being drafted? Big fat “no.” Check out this Concord Monitor article from last weekend.

Don’t blame one political party over another. There’s plenty of responsibility to go around. You can start by letting the President know what you think of the handouts from the federal HHS department. It’s an executive agency, and he’s Chief Executive.

Abortion, the 1st Amendment, and Your Money: Fresh News, Same Old Story

The Trump Administration has announced a proposed rule that would prevent federal Title X family planning money from going to abortion providers. That’s “proposed.” It’s a long road from announcement to implementation. Pro-lifers are cheering as though it’s a done deal, and abortion providers are screaming as only people who’ve been hit in the wallet can scream.

Take a breath, folks. The proposed rule is good news. It would protect taxpayers from involvement in the abortion industry. But the rule is not in place yet, and may never be. Continue reading “Abortion, the 1st Amendment, and Your Money: Fresh News, Same Old Story”

Cecile’s Legacy

Originally posted at DaTechGuy blog, 5/2/18.

Seen at NH March for Life 2018.

The Twitterverse murmured #ThankYouCecile the other day to mark the end of Cecile Richards’s tenure leading the Planned Parenthood Federation of America. Hats off to the Babylon Bee for skewering that bit of social media hashtagging: “Woman Celebrated for Killing 3.5 Million People.”

That satirical bull’s eye came just a few days after another one from the same source: “Planned Parenthood Defends Bill Cosby: ‘Sexual Assault Is Only 3% Of What He Does’”. I wish I’d written that.

But in all seriousness, Richards is a consequential woman. It would be a mistake to pretend otherwise. Planned Parenthood has had high-profile leaders before and will have them again. What sets Richards apart are the sheer bloody numbers and her solid brass determination. Continue reading “Cecile’s Legacy”

On 3-2 votes, Council Okays Contracts with Abortion Providers

I’m going to tell you about a vote, and then I’m going to turn to Abby Johnson for comment. Stay with me here: no, she isn’t in New Hampshire and she has no idea what an Executive Council is, but something she published the same day as the Council’s vote is relevant.

The Vote

Overflow crowd outside Executive Council. Cornerstone Action photo/Facebook.

Family planning contracts were awarded to ten agencies by the New Hampshire Executive Council on November 8. Three of those contracts were with abortion providers, including Planned Parenthood of Northern New England.

All the contracts were approved. For the three that gave tax money to known abortion providers, the votes were 3-2. Councilors Joe Kenney and Dave Wheeler got it right. Councilors Andru Volinsky, Russell Prescott, and Chris Pappas didn’t. (Contact info here.)

The contracts were for non-abortion services. Of course, money from such contracts help keep the lights on and the facilities staffed for when abortions are done.

Abby Johnson’s Comment

If you read nothing else today, read Abby Johnson’s piece in the The Federalist entitled “7 Things I Learned At The Women’s Convention About Feminists And Abortion.” You could even forward it to your Councilor or to Governor Sununu, if you think he’d be interested.

Abby attended the recent national “Women’s Convention” in Detroit, saying “I chose to attend because wherever there are pro-choice voices, there ought to also be a pro-life voice.”

An excerpt:

We attended the “Planned Parenthood track” over the weekend, and learned a few things. First, Planned Parenthood is totally done using the word “choice.” They explained that by saying “choice,” we are assuming that one of the choices could be wrong. Huh? Anyway, now they are using the word “decision.” They feel that sounds much more positive and somehow helps to eliminate abortion stigma. They talked nonstop about eliminating abortion stigma. They want abortion to be normal….

The abortion industry is no longer hiding behind their “family planning” services. They are super proud of the abortions they commit. One woman in a panel, who worked for Planned Parenthood, even said Planned Parenthood should stop saying abortion is “only 3 percent of their services.” She said Planned Parenthood shouldn’t try to hide that the “majority of what they do in the clinics is to provide abortions.” Another thing I learned: these women are super honest about what the abortion industry is all about when they think no pro-lifers are around.

 

Council Okays Contracts

Update to earlier post: the New Hampshire Executive Council has voted 4-1 to grant contracts to two abortion providers. Concord’s Equality Center and Planned Parenthood of Northern New England were awarded the contracts for anti-HIV work.

The vote was 4-1, with District 5 Councilor David Wheeler casting the lone vote in defense of taxpayers who want to keep healthcare funds away from abortion providers. The contracts were supported by Councilors Joe Kenney, Andru Volinsky, Russell Prescott, and Chris Pappas.

Planned Parenthood’s half-billion dollars in annual taxpayer funding, calculated from all grants to PP affiliates including PPNNE, has just been augmented by $275,000.