What: All Issues : Family Planning : Abortion : HR 1388. (National service programs) Motion to kill an amendment that would clarify that some crisis pregnancy centers and organizations serving battered women would be eligible for a nonprofit grant program/On the motion (2009 senate Roll Call 111)
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HR 1388. (National service programs) Motion to kill an amendment that would clarify that some crisis pregnancy centers and organizations serving battered women would be eligible for a nonprofit grant program/On the motion
senate Roll Call 111     Mar 25, 2009
Progressive Position:
Yea
Progressive Result:
Win

This vote was on whether to kill an amendment by John Ensign, R-Nev., that would stipulate that certain crisis pregnancy centers and organizations serving battered women are eligible for a nonprofit capacity building program. Ensign's amendment was offered to another amendment by Max Baucus, D-Mont., that would authorize $5 million over five years for the nonprofit grant program, which provides training for small and mid-sized charities in an array of areas, including financial management, fundraising, tax forms, computer technologies and long-term budgeting. The amendment was offered to a bill that would reauthorize the Corporation for National and Community Service programs (which includes VISTA and AmeriCorps). 

Ensign said his amendment would broaden the definition of what nonprofits can be included in Baucus' amendment's new grant program to include crisis pregnancy centers and other nonprofits that serve battered and abused women.

"What my amendment says is, even though the bill doesn’t specifically exclude any organizations, I wish to make sure that several of these organizations or types of organizations are able to be included and eligible for some of those legal fees," Ensign said.  "I wished to make sure that somewhere down the line somebody at an administrative level doesn’t exclude somebody because they have a different political philosophy."

Barbara Mikulski, who helped draft the underlying bill, said the program already has no limitations on what types of charities can access funding, and as a result Ensign's amendment is unnecessary.

"I wish to also comment on his desire to include crisis pregnancy centers. That is a broad definition. I am not sure what he means by a crisis pregnancy center. There are those that are ones with a particular philosophical viewpoint as compared to broad pregnancy information. These centers are already covered by language in the current bill. The amendment is not needed," Mikulski said.  "It is unnecessary and unneeded and would cause quite an intense negotiation with the House when we go to conference."

By a vote of 56-41, the Senate adopted the motion.  All but three Democrats present voted for the motion.  All but two Republicans present voted against the motion.  The end result is that the motion carried, the amendment was defeated, and the bill went forward without specific language that would have specified that certain crisis pregnancy centers and organizations serving battered women would be eligible for a nonprofit training grant program.

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