White House Criticizes Abortion Funding Restrictions in D.C. Spending Bill

July 14, 2011 — The Obama administration on Wednesday criticized a provision in a House spending bill that bans the District of Columbia from using local funds to pay for abortion care for low-income women, the Washington Post's "D.C. Wire" reports.

In a Statement of Administration Policy, the Office of Management and Budget said the provision in the financial services and general government appropriations bill "undermines the principle of states' rights and of D.C. home rule." The statement did not say whether the president would veto the bill because of the provision.

Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.) spoke on the House floor Wednesday in opposition to the bill. "Members of Congress, who are unaccountable to the electorate of the District of Columbia, have no right to use the budget process to direct local spending away from matters that may be controversial to you, but are not controversial to our local jurisdiction," Holmes Norton said.

The House is scheduled to vote on the bill on Friday, though the vote could be pushed to next week, according to "D.C. Wire" (Pershing, "D.C. Wire," Washington Post, 7/13).