Vice President Mike Pence cast a tie-breaking vote in the Senate to pass a bill allowing states to defund Planned Parenthood and other abortion-providing health clinics on Thursday.
Buzzfeed reports two Republicans, Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, voted against the legislation along with all of the Senate’s Democrats. Another Republican, Johnny Isakson of Georgia, came to the Senate in a wheelchair recovering from back surgery to support the bill.
This left the vote up to Pence, who broke the tie, sending the bill to President Trump’s desk. President Trump is expected to sign the bill into law.
The bill would roll back yet another Obama-era rule that stopped states from withholding funds from clinics that provided abortions, according to NBC News. The rule went into effect two days before Obama left office in a last-minute effort to protect Planned Parenthood.
“We’re talking about federal family planning funds and I don’t think that those funds should be subjected to state restrictions,” Collins told POLITICO. “It’s important to recognize that there is already a bar against using federal funds for abortion and that bar stays in effect. That’s a prohibition that I personally support, but I’m a strong supporter of family planning funds.”
Many users took to Twitter to voice their discontent with the vote and inform others of the services Planned Parenthood and other such clinics provide besides abortion.
Mike Pence cast the tie-breaking vote today to allow states to defund Planned Parenthood. Maybe he forgot about this..? https://t.co/O0ef8zQST4
— Caroline O. (@RVAwonk) March 30, 2017
Earth to GOP: Planned Parenthood does 97% non-abortion services. Not one penny of federal funds goes to abortion. #IStandWithPP
— Barbara Boxer (@BarbaraBoxer) March 31, 2017
Dear Mike Pence,
— Angela Belcamino (@AngelaBelcamino) March 30, 2017
Planned Parenthood provides:
pap smears & pelvic exams
FOR 5 MILLION PEOPLE /yr https://t.co/LKBpPE5HX2
— Hannah Leisman (@HannahLeisman) March 30, 2017