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Planned Parenthood receives $80 million in coronavirus relief funds

Pro-Life groups expressed concerns early on that coronavirus relief funds may find their way into the hands of organizations like Planned Parenthood. Now they are outraged to learn that affiliates of the organization received $80 million from the recent CARES Act.

In response, 27 Republican senators sent a letter this week to Attorney General William Barr to investigate the matter.

The senators claim that the organization was ineligible for the relief funds due to rules outlined in the Paycheck Protection Program stating that payments can only go to organizations with fewer than 500 employees.

“This week, it was publicly reported that at least thirty-seven Planned Parenthood affiliates across the country applied for and received millions of dollars in Paycheck Protection Program loans administered by the Small Business Administration,” the letter states. “These Planned Parenthood entities self-certified eligibility for these loans despite the clear ineligibility under the statutory text of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (“CARES”) Act.”

The Small Business Administration has already sent letters to several Planned Parenthood affiliates instructing them to return the funds.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell discussed the issue on the Senate floor Wednesday.

“We learned yesterday that the nation’s largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood, abused this emergency process and grabbed tens of millions of dollars of taxpayer money for which they were completely ineligible,” said McConnell.

“Disrespecting human life is their central mission. And they just took advantage of a national crisis and helped themselves to tens of millions of taxpayer dollars they were clearly forbidden from taking. It goes without saying the money must be sent back immediately.”

Texas Sen.Ted Cruz and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio both signed onto the letter. Cruz said that Planned Parenthood has prevented millions of small businesses from receiving much-needed relief. Rubio pointed out that the organization is sitting on half a billion dollars in net assets. He said if they knowingly broke the law they must be held accountable.

Planned Parenthood Federation of America said the move by the SBA is politically motivated and a “relentless attack” by the Trump administration.

“This is a clear political attack on Planned Parenthood health centers and access to reproductive health care,” Jacqueline Ayers, vice president of government relations and public policy, said in a statement.

Ayers did not say whether or not Planned Parenthood would return the funds.

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