Cantor: House Republicans Plan to Keep 'Promise' to Stop Federal Funding of Abortions

By Elizabeth Harrington | October 12, 2011 | 12:11 PM EDT

Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.), the House majority leader, speaks with reporters in his Capitol Hill office. (AP photo)

( - Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.), the majority leader of the House, said Tuesday that eliminating federal funding for abortions is a promise put forward in their "Pledge to America" that House Republicans intend to keep.

Cantor was asked by a reporter at a pen-and-pad briefing with the press: “You made a point of stressing this week, and other weeks, the need to sort of try to find some commonality (with the White House and Democrats).

But, then this week, the House is also taking up abortion legislation, which obviously is not going to get through the Senate or the White House. How do you square those two things?”

Cantor replied that the legislation was part of the Republican legislative agenda.

“That was part of our ‘Pledge to America,’” Cantor said.

“We have always said that we were going to move to eliminate government funding of organizations that perform abortions, and it is something that we said that we would do, and we’re upholding that pledge.”

A provision in a House draft appropriations bill, released last month, for fiscal year 2012 for the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies (LHHS) department would guarantee that no funds allocated by the Act would be available for use by Planned Parenthood, or any of its affiliates or clinics, unless it was verified that none of the funds would be used to provide abortions.

The House Republican leadership released “A Pledge to America: Following Through on our Promises” in September 2010, outlining its legislative agenda on jobs, national security and health care. Among its many promises is to “Permanently Prohibit Taxpayer Funding of Abortion.”