House Bill Target D.C. Abortion Funding

June 6, 2012 — Republicans on the House Appropriations Committee on Tuesday released a 2013 District of Columbia spending bill that would maintain a ban on public funding of abortion care in the district, the Washington Post reports.

The provision bars D.C. from using its own tax dollars to fund abortion care for low-income women. The ban has been in place every year that Republicans have controlled the House since 1994.

The abortion provision is a regular source of tension with D.C. leaders, who oppose it. Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.) said she and a coalition of outside groups "will fight back against that rider" (Pershing, Washington Post, 6/5).

More than 100 organizations, including the NAACP and American Civil Liberties Union, on Tuesday sent a letter to Congress criticizing the provision. "Congress does not impose its views on any other local jurisdiction in the [U.S.]," the letter said, adding, "We expect Congress to be consistent by letting Washingtonians manage their own affairs without interference or meddling" (Siegelbaum, The Hill, 6/6).