Jun 27, 2006 / 22:00 pm
Pro-life groups are concerned about an influx of money to Planned Parenthood Federation after billionaire Warren Buffett announced he would parcel out his fortunes to several foundations with a known record of supporting abortion groups.
Buffett on Monday signed over almost $31 billion of his $44 billion fortune to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which generally focuses on fighting disease, reducing poverty and improving education.
Buffett, 75, built the world's second biggest personal fortune running Berkshire Hathaway Inc, an insurance and investment company. Bill Gates, the world's richest person, co-founded and remains chairman of software company Microsoft Corp.
According to Reuters, Buffett pledged 10 million Berkshire Class B shares to the Gates Foundation. He also pledged 2.05 million Class B shares to foundations in the name of his late wife, Susan, who died in 2004, and his three children. The Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation has supported Planned Parenthood and other abortion groups.
Fr. Thomas J. Euteneuer, president of Human Life International, issued a statement pointing out Buffett’s track record of supporting pro-abortion organizations and related projects in the developing world.
He reported that Buffett’s foundation also gave a grant to the U.S.-based Center for Reproductive Rights, which fought bans on partial-birth abortion, and Catholics for a Free Choice.
“The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have also given millions of dollars to organizations pushing abortion around the world,” Fr. Euteneuer reported.
Several pro-life groups are questioning Planned Parenthood’s need for more funds - as well as its continued petitioning for government funding - given that it had a record year for funding last year.
The Planned Parenthood Federation of America recently released its annual report for 2004-05, which shows that it took in more total money ($882 million), more government money ($272.7 million) and more clinic money ($346.8 million) than ever before.
In addition, the report shows that Planned Parenthood continued to make money last year - $63 million. The additional profits for last year brings the total profits of Planned Parenthood to $649.6 million since 1987. The total net assets of the company are now at $784.1 million - $478.7 million of which are in cash or investments.
Jim Sedlak, the director of STOPP International, a Planned Parenthood watchdog group, compiled data from Planned Parenthood’s annual reports. He said he was surprised the abortion business continued to ask for state and federal taxpayer dollars despite receiving record income from foundations and other groups.
Since 1987, Planned Parenthood has received a total of $3.9 billion in taxpayers' money, Sedlak stated.
Planned Parenthood also set other records last year for the lowest number of women it referred for adoption compared with the number of abortions it performed.
Planned Parenthood performed a record number of abortions - 255,015. The annual report shows it performed 180 abortions for every one woman it sent to an adoption agency.