In the past three budget years, you have sent nearly $200,000 to the nation's largest private abortion provider, Planned Parenthood, which, by the way, makes millions of dollars nationally. Between 2006 and 2007 you paid for more than 300 elective abortions (not involving rape or incest).

Federal law requires Virginia pay for low-income abortions in cases of rape and incest. The Commonwealth, however, has decided to go beyond the requirement and fund "elective" abortions as well — hundreds of them. This taxpayer support of elective abortion is unnecessary and must end.

Likely, those numbers are just the tip of the iceberg. The Commonwealth of Virginia hasn't exactly been forthcoming with information regarding how much taxpayer money is going to Planned Parenthood and to fund abortions, requiring multiple Freedom of Information Act requests from The Family Foundation and legislators. The real numbers are yet to be determined.

But whatever the case, taxpayer funding of these entities must stop!

For several years, The Family Foundation and our many pro-family partners, have worked to put an end to taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood in Virginia. In 2008, we came ever so close and, for the first time, had budget language pass both the House and Senate that would have done just that, only to see the language left out of the final budget. We will work once again in 2009 to eliminate this funding.

Planned Parenthood, a national political behemoth, had an income in its last fiscal year of more than $1 billion. Incredibly, nearly one-third of that income comes from you, the American taxpayer. In its last annual report Planned Parenthood reported more than $330 million in government — i.e., taxpayer — grants.

What is this money used for?

Planned Parenthood is the largest private provider of abortion in the United States, performing more than one quarter of all abortions, or nearly 300,000 in 2006. As the national abortion rate has gradually declined in recent years, Planned Parenthood's abortion number continues to increase by double digits.

It is an organization that works everyday to end abstinence education in our schools and to replace it with their own agenda, a so-called comprehensive sex education program that results in more kids engaging in risky behaviors, more sexually transmitted diseases among our teenagers, more teenage pregnancy and, yes, more abortions — from which it profits.

It is an organization that supports the barbarity of partial birth abortion. It is an organization that fears beyond imagination the thought that a woman contemplating an abortion might have the opportunity to view an ultrasound of her unborn child.

It is an organization that does not need a "bailout" from the taxpayers (which is what we've provided it all these years).

As lawmakers face a $4 billion spending surplus and complain about not being able to balance the budget, they can start with the unnecessary taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood and elective abortions. The Family Foundation will support budget amendments this year that do just that.