Aborting federal funding of Planned Parenthood could backfire.
I admit this is purely speculative but I would not be surprised if the net impact of Planned Parenthood’s activities is to decrease the number of abortions because they spend far more money on services that might prevent abortions than on services that promote them.
Planned Parenthood is a private 501(c)3 non-profit organization run not by a big, intrusive government but by private citizens exercising their liberties in a free society.
Planned Parenthood is already prohibited from using any federal funding for abortions.
Reducing federal funding for their other services, some of which may prevent unwanted or unhealthy pregnancies and promote safe, planned, well-prepared pregnancies, might actually have the effect of increasing the number of abortions.
It might behoove Planned Parenthood and their opponents both to try to develop some credible metrics on this. Of course, it is much harder to prove that an abortion may have been prevented than to prove that one has been performed.
FYI from Wikipedia:
Planned Parenthood is the nation’s leading sexual and reproductive health care advocate and provider. In 2008, they reported that contraception constituted 35% of total services, STI/STD testing and treatment constituted 34%, cancer testing and screening constituted 17%; and other women’s health procedures, including pregnancy, prenatal, midlife, and infertility were 10%. 2% to 3% of visits involve abortions.
In the 2007–08 Annual Report, clinic income totalled $374.7 million and miscellaneous operating revenues $68.9 million. Approximately two-thirds of the revenue is put towards the provision of health services, while non-medical services such as sex education and public policy work make up another 16%; management expenses, fundraising, and international family planning programs account for most of the rest.
Planned Parenthood receives about a third of its money in government grants and contracts ($349.6 million in the 2008 fiscal year). A coalition of national and local pro-life groups have lobbied the federal government to stop funding Planned Parenthood. Federal legislators have also proposed laws that would ban Planned Parenthood from receiving federal money for any purpose. By law, Planned Parenthood cannot allocate any federal funding for abortions. Some abortion opponents, like Rep. Mike Pence of Indiana, have argued that allocating money to Planned Parenthood for the provision of other medical services “frees up” funds for abortion.
Planned Parenthood is also funded by private donors, with a membership base of over 700,000 active donors whose contributions account for approximately one quarter of the organization’s revenue. Large donors also contribute a substantial portion of the organization’s budget; donors have included the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Buffett Foundation, Ford Foundation, Ted Turner Foundation, the Cullmans and others. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s contributions to the organization have been specifically marked to avoid funding abortions. Some, such as the Buffett Foundation, have specifically marked funds for abortion services.