On Monday, Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., was asked three times to explain how he can call himself a “pro-life” Democrat and yet vote against defunding Planned Parenthood. He was unapologetic for his vote and demonstrated that he has no idea how money works — claiming that federal money sent to Planned Parenthood does not support abortions.
Speaking with Hoppy Kercheval on MetroNews’ Talkline Monday morning, Manchin was asked why he voted against an amendment offered by Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., to defund Planned Parenthood, the nation’s number-one abortion provider.
“Hoppy, that’s not going to change anything,” Manchin said of Paul’s amendment. “First, there’s not a penny of public dollars that go to abortions for Planned Parenthood. I’ve checked it inside and out; with the Hyde amendment, it can’t happen. It’s against the law.”
“Now, we have one clinic in the state of West Virginia, Vienna, that provides health care, preventive healthcare, for women and mostly young females. I can’t look at them, Hoppy, and say, ‘I’m sorry, but because of me being hunt politically, I can’t vote so that you’ll have funding for your — for the clinic.’ I just can’t do it,” he continued.
“But, I am pro-life, and I think everyone knows,” Manchin insisted. “Look at my record. I voted with Lindsey Graham on the 21-week ban on abortions; I voted for everything except I could not take funding away when I knew the funding was not used for abortions. I don’t know how else to say it.”
Kercheval challenged Manchin, explaining that by funding Planned Parenthood, Congress is essentially subsidizing abortion, since money is fungible and Planned Parenthood uses taxpayer dollars to cover costs unrelated to abortions, freeing up its own money to pay for abortions.
Manchin denied this is the case.
“We’re not propping them up,” he said.
Several pro-life organizations and groups have opposed federal funding for Planned Parenthood. The Susan B. Anthony List issued a statement slamming Manchin for “flip-flopping.”
“Pro-life West Virginians cannot trust flip-flopping Joe Manchin to stand up for unborn children. Senator Manchin claims to be pro-life, but he has a history of betrayal on important pro-life votes, including today when he once again voted in support of sending taxpayer dollars to America’s largest abortion business, Planned Parenthood. His record is dramatically out of step with his constituents,” said the organization’s president, Marjorie Dannenfelser.
Kercheval asked Manchin about these groups.
“I understand the political atmosphere we have, and it’s just 100 percent,” Manchin replied. “Unless you vote 100 percent with them, and both sides are guilty, you don’t vote 100 percent, you know, they’re not gonna support you, not with you. As long as I vote 100 percent for the West Virginia people, and all people, I feel good about that.”
But Joe Manchin isn’t voting 100 percent with the West Virginia people. The unborn babies killed in Planned Parenthood’s clinics are not represented by Manchin in the United States Senate, not when he votes to continue funding the nation’s largest abortion provider — right along with all the Republicans and Democrats who voted for the final spending package.
Chris Pandolfo is a staff writer and type-shouter for Conservative Review. He holds a B.A. in politics and economics from Hillsdale College. His interests are conservative political philosophy, the American founding, and progressive rock. Follow him on Twitter for doom-saying and great album recommendations @ChrisCPandolfo.
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