On October 1, 2019, Lansing, MI, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced she vetoed a state budget allocation for a program she voted for as a state legislator.
All of the $150,000 allocated for the Pregnant and Parenting Student Services Act in the 2020 state budget was vetoed by Governor Whitmer. The Act created a fund for higher education institutions to establish offices to assist students who are pregnant or parenting children.
Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “Governor Whitmer is now an abortion ideologue. If this program included funding for students to have abortions instead of helping them parent through school, she would have never touched it.”
The Pregnant and Parenting Student Services Act was signed into law by Governor Jennifer Granholm in 2004. It passed the Michigan House by a unanimous vote, including support from then State Representative Gretchen Whitmer.
Because of the state’s economic downturn, the program never received state funding to get off the ground. The 2020 state budget was the first to include funding.
Listing said, “Services for parenting and pregnant students on campuses are rarely even mentioned, let alone prioritized. The message our culture sends today is too often that women must choose between education and the life of their child. We can do more for mothers on campus, and at one time Governor Whitmer seemed to understand that.”
Included in Governor Whitmer’s budget line-item vetoes was the Real Alternatives program, which provides funding for organizations that help women of any age experiencing crisis pregnancies. Governor Whitmer cut all $700,000 of the funding allocated by the Legislature.
Listing said, “Governor Whitmer views even small pregnancy help programs as competition to the abortion industry that must be run out of business. Governor Whitmer will always put Planned Parenthood’s bottom line as a higher priority than women who choose life in difficult circumstances.”
Despite Governor Whitmer’s funding cuts, prolife pregnancy help and adoption organizations will continue to serve women and men in need across the state at more than 150 locations. Prolife students will continue to advocate for their colleges to do more to help pregnant college students remain in school.
Listing said, “Abortion advocates claim prolife people don’t care about women facing crisis pregnancies. But when prolife people try to help, these same abortion advocates do everything they can to shut us down.”