On September 22, Senator Marco Rubio appeared on Fox News’ “Special Report with Bret Baier.” Baier asked Rubio how far the Senator would be willing to go to defund Planned Parenthood:
BRET BAIER: So how far do you go to stand the line in what you’ve talked about, defunding Planned Parenthood?
MARCO RUBIO: Well, to me, that’s not even a political issue, that’s a human rights issue. People don’t understand that but to me, that’s a human rights issue. We discuss it as a political issue but to me the sanctity of life is a human right issue. I believe that unborn children have rights. That someone, just because they haven’t been born and don’t have a birth certificate and haven’t yet been named, doesn’t mean they don’t have rights. Planned Parenthood is an organization that’s been caught repeatedly, and now on video, trafficking in fetal tissue of aborted children. And it’s an outrageous practice. Americans are outraged by it. And they don’t understand, why are we continuing to fund with taxpayer money an organization that does this sort of thing? And so what we’ve proposed is take the money that Planned Parenthood gets, and let’s give it to federally qualified health centers that don’t do what Planned Parenthood does, but do provide women’s healthcare, which is important. And so what we should’ve said very early on is, we’re gonna pass budgets that do that. And then the president and the Democrats will have to decide whether or not they’re willing to shut down government over Planned Parenthood, because they’re the ones that are threatening to shut down the government – it’s not Republicans.
BAIER: Right, but it’s not spun that way.
RUBIO: Well, we didn’t start early on. I thought it was important for the leadership of our party to have outlined that early in the process, as opposed to basically waving a white flag and saying, ‘Well, we’re gonna take some votes but we know we can’t do anything about it.’ Again, it’s an unacceptable outcome that we’re now going to see. But I’ll tell you this – if I’m president, we will deal with this issue. There’s no reason why Planned Parenthood should be receiving federal taxpayer funding, especially after they’ve been exposed the way they have.
Thomas Valentine is a researcher for APIA and a junior at the Franciscan University of Steubenville.