Will the government shut down over abortion?

It could be a significant factor.

Details, from the New York Times:

There are fights about money and fights about ideas, and the battle over a spending plan to keep the government open is increasingly centered on the latter.

The frenetic negotiations to avert a government shutdown seem largely focused not on dollars and cents, where the two sides are not all that far apart, but on policy issues, primarily abortion and environmental regulations, that defy easy compromise.

“We’ve been close on the cuts for days,” Harry Reid, the Democratic Senate majority leader, said Thursday, adding, “The only things — I repeat, the only things — holding up an agreement are two of their so-called social issues: women’s health and clean air.”

Speaker John A. Boehner begged to differ, saying that Democrats and Republicans were far apart in every way. After a meeting on Thursday at the White House, Mr. Boehner said, “When I see what the White House has to offer today, it’s really just more of the same.”

As both sides waged war in the Senate and House, and via news releases and Twitter feeds, hundreds of supporters of Planned Parenthood rallied in the capital to oppose cuts to their programs, which have become a focal point of Republican policy riders.

Policy provisions tend to worm their way into any spending bill; indeed, some of the provisions Republicans are seeking to undo became law through spending measures passed by Democrats a few years ago.

But the debate over these measures is different in a few significant ways. The House Republican proposals are numerous and sweeping, and would essentially rewrite broad areas of policy. And they are attached to a document that is meant not simply to pay for government services, but avoid a shutdown, which raises the stakes of the debate considerably.

Further, it is a difficult proposition to come to an accord over social issues that have been publicly debated for decades in a divided government with each side under pressure from its ideological wing.

Read on.

UPDATE: From this morning:

Democratic officials familiar with the negotiations said that proposed restrictions on money for Planned Parenthood remained the chief sticking point, and that attempts to resolve the disagreement through alternatives like allowing a separate floor vote on the issue had not been successful. Democrats said they were told by the Republicans that the votes of anti-abortion social conservatives would be needed to move any budget measure through the House.

RELATED: Government Shutdown Threatened Over Planned Parenthood


  1. Brother Jeff says:

    Can someone enlighten me on the facts here? I thought the federal government did NOT provide funds to abortion providers (that was a sticking point of Obamacare), but now it seems like we have been all along?

    Let it shut down over this. And if Congress and Obama continue to get paid while the military does not, they will pay for it HUGE at the ballot box.

  2. Wow! Planned Parenthood only got hundreds to be in attendance. The annual March for Life has exceeded 400,000 in recent years.

  3. Why are the democrats blaming women for the government shut down? http://morningquickie.com/2011/04/08/government-shutdown-budget-blaming-women/

    They ignore our issues for years but suddenly women’s rights are important enough to shut down the government. They should stop hiding behind our petticoats!

  4. Deacon John M. Bresnahan says:

    What does Planned Parenthood have on Reid and crew?? It is a private organization. Federal funds do not need to flow to this particular group to do their dirty work (abortions) or to do good–like provide mammograms. (Which we have all learned by some excellent investigative reporting–mostly ignored by the mainstream media–PP does not provide in about 99% of their locations).
    So why this zealous fanaticism for–not issues–but to protect and enrich an organization which–if you know their history–was for most of its life a virulent, hate-filled racist organization. (And one could argue is still so today because it is Black and Hispanic neighborhoods they continue to target–and of course it is this angle of the PP story the media fastidiously doesn’t mention in its reporting).
    On top of that we know PP protects men guilty of statutory rape. Could some of them be members of Congress??????

  5. pagansister says:

    If they vote to table the PP proposal then they can do the other stuff and work on PP and funding later.

Leave a Comment