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1999 Ron Paul Chapter 84

Population Control

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2 August 1999

The CHAIRMAN. The gentleman from Texas (Mr. PAUL) is recognized for 5 minutes.

(Mr. PAUL asked and was given permission to revise and extend his remarks.)

1999 Ron Paul 84:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself 3 minutes.

1999 Ron Paul 84:2
Mr. Chairman, the amendment is straightforward. It prohibits the use of any money for population control, family planning, or abortion of any funds authorized in this bill, appropriated in this bill.

1999 Ron Paul 84:3
Mr. Chairman, the question really is this: Should the American taxpayer be required to pay for birth control pills, IUDs, Depo-Provera, Norplant, condom distribution, as well as abortion in foreign countries. Those who believe this is a proper and legitimate function will vote against the amendment. Those who believe that it is not a proper function for us to be doing these things around the world would vote for my amendment.

1999 Ron Paul 84:4
Mr. Chairman, I mention abortion because although this bill does not authorize funds directly for abortion, any birth control center that is involved that receives funds from us and are involved with abortion, all they do is shift the funds. All funds are fungible, so any country that we give money to that is involved with abortion, for whatever reason, or especially in a family planning clinic, can very easily shift those funds and perform abortions. So this is very, very clear-cut.

1999 Ron Paul 84:5
I would like to spend a minute though on the authority that is cited for doing such a thing. Under the House rules, the committee is required to at least cite the constitutional authority for doing what we do on each of our bills. Of course, I was curious about this, because I was wondering whether this could be general welfare. This does not sound like the general welfare of the U.S. taxpayer, to be passing out condoms and birth control pills and forcing our will on other people, imposing our standards on them and forcing our taxpayers to pay. That does not seem to have anything to do whatsoever with the general welfare of this country.

1999 Ron Paul 84:6
Of course, the other clause that is generally used in our legislation is the interstate commerce clause. Well, it would be pretty tough, pretty tough, justifying passing out condoms in the various countries of the world under the interstate commerce clause.

1999 Ron Paul 84:7
So it was very interesting to read exactly what the justification is. The Committee on Appropriations, quoting from the committee report, the Committee on Appropriations bases its authority to report this legislation from clause 7, section 9 of Article I of the Constitution of the United States of America, which states “no money shall be drawn from the Treasury but in consequence of appropriation made by law.” “Appropriations contained in this act,” the report says, “are made pursuant to this specific power granted by the Constitution.”

1999 Ron Paul 84:8
That is not a power. That was a prohibition. It was to keep us from spending money without appropriation. If this is true, we can spend money on anything in the world, and the Constitution has zero meaning. This cannot possibly be.

1999 Ron Paul 84:9
So all I would suggest is this: Be a little more creative when we talk about the Constitution. There must be a more creative explanation on why we are spending these kinds of monies overseas.

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