A measure to defund Planned Parenthood was shot down in the Senate after passing the House by a vote of 241-185. The Senate vote was 42-58, with five Republicans rejecting the stand-alone measure: Sen. Scott Brown of Massachusetts, Mark Kirk of Illinois, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe of Maine, MSNBC reports. Ten Democrats backed the measure in the House.
Federal laws ban spending government money for abortions unless a woman's life is in danger, but Republicans argue that providing Planned Parenthood with funding for other services frees up cash it can use to subsidize abortion services, Bloomberg notes. Planned Parenthood’s president hailed the Senate for rejecting "this extreme proposal."