Pope Francis' words calling for lawmakers to uphold the responsible to "protect and defend human life at every stage of development" has strengthened Republicans' resolve to hold Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers accountable and to defend unborn children, Tennessee Rep. Marsha Blackburn said in Saturday's GOP address
"We have all been so shocked and outraged by the videos portraying the grisly practices of Planned Parenthood," Blackburn said. "These videos show abortions being altered so as to maximize the harvesting and resale of organs and body parts. It really is sickening."
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House Republicans, she said, first plan to ramp up oversight and investigative practices, including starting a new select subcommittee to focus its attention on getting to the bottom of the practices revealed in the undercover sting videos.
Blackburn said there will also be a push for additional pro-life measures.
"Already, the House has voted to ban abortions from the point at which babies begin to feel pain," she said. "We will continue to do more and put these bills on the president's desk."
House Republicans will also redouble efforts to remove government funding from Planned Parenthood, Blackburn said.
"Twice now — twice — Senate Democrats have blocked our efforts to restrict funding to Planned Parenthood," she said. "They defend the organization and its practices even though they freely admit they haven’t watched the videos. That’s wrong. So we are activating the reconciliation process, which will allow us to break Senate Democrats' logjam and get this bill to the president’s desk."
The topic is difficult to address, she acknowledged, but on the videos, Planned Parenthood officials are seen haggling over prices, and they "casually sift through body parts."
Blackburn called the activities "some of the most abhorrent, inhumane things imaginable, and they do it all as if it is just routine — an expected part of doing business."
Planned Parenthood performs more than 300,000 abortions every year, she continued, and that is "300,000 babies that could be adopted into loving homes, babies that could go on to become some of the greatest contributions to our society."
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