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FY2011 Budget And Planned Parenthood

April 15, 2011

Yesterday, the House and Senate adopted the FY2011 budget for the remainder of the fiscal year following the one-week funding measure that prevented a government shutdown last week.

The vote in the House was interesting. All three Republicans in the Mississippi delegation- Representatives Alan Nunnelee, Gregg Harper, and Steven Palazzo- supported the budget while Rep. Bennie Thompson opposed it. But, overall we saw a number of Republicans who backed off after reports showed the cuts might not be as deep as advertised. This forced Speaker John Boehner to rely on Democratic votes for passage. The vote was 260-167 with 59 Republicans opposing it.

Final passage in the Senate was a little less dramatic at 81-19; 15 of the budgets’ opponents were Republicans. Senators Roger Wicker and Thad Cochran supported the bill. Also yesterday, the Senate voted against a bill to defund Planned Parenthood.

Statement from Sen. Cochran:

“These reductions in spending will compound over time and, if sustained, will result in a significant reduction in our national debt. These reductions don’t come without consequences, however. The bill cuts programs that are important both nationally and in my state of Mississippi.

We all recognize, however, that sacrifices must be made in order to achieve the greater good of fiscal solvency. We also recognize that this bill is only one step toward addressing our nation’s debt problem. Hopefully, the agreement reached on this bill will lay a foundation for the much more difficult decisions on entitlements and taxes that lie ahead.

I hope that in the coming months Congress and the President will reach consensus on a budget plan that will address each of the major drivers of our current fiscal imbalance, including discretionary spending. We need to find a way to bring fiscal year 2012 appropriations bills to the floor individually and get them to conference with the other body. I believe that such a process would provide needed constraints on spending levels while allowing all members to influence the content of the individual bills.”

Statement from Sen. Wicker:

“Today’s vote is a start to putting our country back on a fiscally-responsible path, but deeper cuts in the coming months will be necessary. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff called our national debt the greatest threat to America’s security that we face. With debt that is close to the $14.29 trillion debt ceiling, we must quit spending money that we do not have. I remain committed to reducing spending in ways that make sense.”

Floor speech from Rep. Nunnelee:

Stand alone legislation to defund Planned Parenthood failed in the Senate, but here is a floor speech from Alan Nunnelee in speaking on his support to defund the abortion provider:

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