As Planned Parenthood smugly announced, via their 2016-17 annual report, they performed 321,384 abortions last year and received $543.7 million in taxpayer subsidies, primarily funneled through Medicaid.

It raises the question: When will the GOP get some grit and finally defund Planned Parenthood?

There is a myriad of reasons why Planned Parenthood should be defunded, and only one reason why they haven’t been. Following the Center for Medical Progress’ explosive undercover videos, Planned Parenthood has been under investigation by numerous committees, including the House Oversight Committee—which found Planned Parenthood needed no federal funds to operate and could function just as well on its own merits.

The Senate Judiciary Committee’s investigation prompted them to refer Planned Parenthood to the FBI for investigation due to fetal tissue trafficking. When he referred them, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, the chairman of the committee said: “I don’t take lightly making a criminal referral. But, the seeming disregard for the law by these entities has been fueled by decades of utter failure by the Justice Department to enforce it. And, unless there is a renewed commitment by everyone involved against commercializing the trade in aborted fetal body parts for profit, then the problem is likely to continue.”

The Center for Medical Progress released several more additional videos this year, that shows Planned Parenthood not only worked with an independent third party, StemExpress, to procure aborted fetal tissue, but that they also purposely profited from the scheme. Between the FBI’s investigation, the previous committee investigations, and the independent investigations of CMP, this is ample reason to, at the least, withdraw federal funds from Planned Parenthood. They aren’t using what they’re receiving wisely and they clearly don’t need it. What’s the rub?

Not to mention, Planned Parenthood likes to feign like they don’t really do many abortions, but their latest annual report proves otherwise. Americans United for Life President and CEO Catherine Glenn Foster pointed out in a statement:

Planned Parenthood’s latest annual report demonstrates that the abortion giant’s bottom line is, as always, its ‘bottom line. Critical patient services such as prenatal care are dropping like a rock, while when it comes to abortion, Planned Parenthood continues to push aggressively to corner the market. Planned Parenthood locations are outnumbered by comprehensive, community-based health clinics 20 to 1, and its affiliates provide services to far less than 1% of the American population, with its client numbers dropping every year. This report demonstrates that truly, we can – and should – provide safe and holistic health care without Planned Parenthood.

The only reason Congress, which boasts a Republican majority, hasn’t defunded Planned Parenthood is because they lack the grit and fortitude they need to do so. There’s no reason, with the overwhelming, damning evidence against Planned Parenthood, that they shouldn’t be stripped of $500 million. If Congress can pass a tax bill, they can do this and they should this year.

Let Planned Parenthood bluster and fume — Congress still needs to do the right thing.

Nicole Russell is a contributor to the Washington Examiner's Beltway Confidential blog. She is a journalist in Washington, D.C., who previously worked in Republican politics in Minnesota. She was the 2010 recipient of the American Spectator's Young Journalist Award.

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