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Published On: Sun, Jun 23rd, 2019

Court rules Trump can end Title X funds for abortions

 The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled yesterday that the Trump administration’s regulations on family planning funds could go into effect and federal funding will be cut off to organizations that provide abortions in the same facilities as other services financed by taxpayer dollars. This regulation, called the Protect Life Rule, will stop federal funding flowing to Planned Parenthood by approximately $60 million.
The Department of Health and Human Services issued the rule to stop the flow of Title X federal funds to family planning facilities that perform abortions or do abortion referrals. This regulation means that clinics that receive federal family planning grants called Title X — which pay for birth control, testing for sexually transmitted diseases, and cancer screenings — will not be allowed to be housed in the same buildings as those that also provide abortions.

Participants in the “March for life” walk along Concord Avenue in Knoxville, Tennessee, photo Michael Stansberry via wikimedia commons

The rule applies to a $286 million-a-year grant that four million low-income people use. Planned Parenthood previously has received between $50 million and $60 million from the grants. The Title X program was enacted in 1970, as part of the Public Health Service Act, to provide family planning assistance, primarily to low-income families. Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J., chairman of the Congressional Pro-Life Caucus, stated that Title X funds were ‘never’ meant to fund abortion services, given that the program was enacted three years before abortion was legalized nationwide.
The Trump administration’s rules had been temporarily blocked nationwide by federal judges in Oregon and Washington, and statewide in California. On Thursday, a panel of judges in the 9th Circuit granted the request 3-0 from the Trump administration to block the preliminary injunctions, saying the different lawsuits underway needed to play out.
The Protect Life Rule was originally signed by President Ronald Reagan in 1988. Reagan’s effort to direct tax dollars to entities that provide health care to women but do not perform abortions was tied up in court and was ultimately overturned in the first days of Bill Clinton’s presidency.
“This court decision in favor of the Protect Life Rule is a great victory for the Trump administration and for Americans who do not want to fund the murder of babies with their tax dollars,” said Liberty Counsel’s Founder and Chairman Mat Staver. “Abortion is not family planning. It’s time to stop Planned Parenthood and other abortion facilities from using Title X as their private blood money fund. I commend President Trump for his commitment to protect the sanctity of human life, the rights of conscience, and religious freedom by revising the regulations for the Title X family planning program,” said Staver.
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