McConnell: Plan to defund Planned Parenthood an 'exercise in futility'

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell thinks that it's a stupid idea to try and defund Planned Parenthood.

More muddle-headed RINOism? Or a bow to political reality?

Politico:

“It’s an exercise in futility," the Kentucky Republican said of a strategy that would likely provoke a government shutdown. "I’m anxious to defund Planned Parenthood" but "the honest answer of that is that’s not going to happen until you have a president who has a similar view."

"It’s better to be honest with the American people and say, ‘That won’t get it done,’” he added.

The Senate leader's bow to political reality further sets up an end-of-month clash with congressional conservatives that could potentially shutter the government over Planned Parenthood funding. Instead, he plans to pursue a two-pronged strategy: A short-term funding bill to buy time to negotiate a longer-term spending measure, and separately, a vote this month to federally ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

The GOP leader said in the interview on Friday that while he’d “love to be able to defund Planned Parenthood” after the release of secretly taped videos that allegedly show group officials discussing sales of fetal tissue, he’s got a math problem: A Democratic minority that will block any such effort and a president that would veto it even if it could pass the Senate.

“Senate Democrats have refused to let us pass any of the 12 appropriations bills,” McConnell said. “What we’re going to do is fund the government into the end of the year and it will obviously have to be something that could get a presidential signature. So there’s no way you can avoid talking to each other about how to get there.”

Asked if that short-term bill would contain any language affecting Planned Parenthood or the nuclear deal with Iran that’s now safe from the GOP’s attacks, McConnell said: “We’re going to take a look at whatever the House sends us.”

But the Kentucky Republican said a strategy being promoted by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and a growing bloc of House conservatives that would oppose any spending bill that funds Planned Parenthood is “misleading people into thinking it’s possible” to strip the organization of funding. That proposal can’t pass the Senate’s 60-vote threshold and even a government shutdown would still keep most funds flowing the women’s healthcare organization.

Appeals to "reality" haven't worked before with congressional right wingers so expect a similar outcome this time. As mentioned above, shutting down the government won't shut down Planned Parenthood's funding, but why let common sense and logic ruin a good tantrum? 

McConnell is a weak, ineffectual leader in the Senate. But he has judged the political situation correctly. A government shutdown would only make sense if it forced Democrats to vote to defund Planned Parenthood and the president to sign the bill. Since it is more likely that Congress will pass a bill giving Americans a unicorn in every garage than defunding Planned Parenthood, perhaps the right wingers should rethink their strategy and set their sights on 2017 when a GOP president, House, and Senate can acccomplish what they want.
 

 

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell thinks that it's a stupid idea to try and defund Planned Parenthood.

More muddle-headed RINOism? Or a bow to political reality?

Politico:

“It’s an exercise in futility," the Kentucky Republican said of a strategy that would likely provoke a government shutdown. "I’m anxious to defund Planned Parenthood" but "the honest answer of that is that’s not going to happen until you have a president who has a similar view."

"It’s better to be honest with the American people and say, ‘That won’t get it done,’” he added.

The Senate leader's bow to political reality further sets up an end-of-month clash with congressional conservatives that could potentially shutter the government over Planned Parenthood funding. Instead, he plans to pursue a two-pronged strategy: A short-term funding bill to buy time to negotiate a longer-term spending measure, and separately, a vote this month to federally ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

The GOP leader said in the interview on Friday that while he’d “love to be able to defund Planned Parenthood” after the release of secretly taped videos that allegedly show group officials discussing sales of fetal tissue, he’s got a math problem: A Democratic minority that will block any such effort and a president that would veto it even if it could pass the Senate.

“Senate Democrats have refused to let us pass any of the 12 appropriations bills,” McConnell said. “What we’re going to do is fund the government into the end of the year and it will obviously have to be something that could get a presidential signature. So there’s no way you can avoid talking to each other about how to get there.”

Asked if that short-term bill would contain any language affecting Planned Parenthood or the nuclear deal with Iran that’s now safe from the GOP’s attacks, McConnell said: “We’re going to take a look at whatever the House sends us.”

But the Kentucky Republican said a strategy being promoted by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and a growing bloc of House conservatives that would oppose any spending bill that funds Planned Parenthood is “misleading people into thinking it’s possible” to strip the organization of funding. That proposal can’t pass the Senate’s 60-vote threshold and even a government shutdown would still keep most funds flowing the women’s healthcare organization.

Appeals to "reality" haven't worked before with congressional right wingers so expect a similar outcome this time. As mentioned above, shutting down the government won't shut down Planned Parenthood's funding, but why let common sense and logic ruin a good tantrum? 

McConnell is a weak, ineffectual leader in the Senate. But he has judged the political situation correctly. A government shutdown would only make sense if it forced Democrats to vote to defund Planned Parenthood and the president to sign the bill. Since it is more likely that Congress will pass a bill giving Americans a unicorn in every garage than defunding Planned Parenthood, perhaps the right wingers should rethink their strategy and set their sights on 2017 when a GOP president, House, and Senate can acccomplish what they want.