By Steven Ertelt — Originally published in LifeNews.com
The Planned Parenthood abortion business announced on Monday it will officially withdraw from the Title X programme — costing it $60-million (R913-million) in taxpayer funds because it refuses to follow a new Trump administration rule that requires it to segment out its abortion business from legitimate health care if it wants federal funding under the programme.
Because the US abortion giant is withdrawing from Title X, the $60 million in taxpayer dollars it received annually can be redistributed to groups that engage in legitimate women’s health care.
The 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals late last Friday rejected a request from more than 20 states, Planned Parenthood and the American Medical Association to block new pro-life rules that Planned Parenthood is refusing to follow. Leading pro-life groups have praised the Trump administration for prioritising women’s health ahead of abortion. This action adds to President Trump’s record of defunding the Planned Parenthood abortion company.
Title X funds are supposed to be used to help low-income women and men receive birth control, cancer screenings and other health care services. While the tax money cannot be used to pay for abortions, it indirectly funds Planned Parenthood’s vast abortion business.
“Planned Parenthood is still open. We are continuing to fight this rule in court,” said Alexis McGill Johnson, acting president of Planned Parenthood. She said the abortion company would do everything it could to make sure that clinics could stay open.
But Catherine Glenn Foster, President and CEO of Americans United for Life, told LifeNews she was not surprised Planned Parenthood put abortion first and women’s health second.
“It’s a great day for women’s health in America. Planned Parenthood is America’s deadliest nonprofit, and the news that they’re refusing to accept taxpayer funds to target vulnerable women is a good thing for women’s health. Women deserve the chance to live empowered, full lives that are free from the harms that Planned Parenthood poses through abortion and abortion-focused services. Women who need true healthcare will have their needs met by authentic and eager healthcare providers across America,” she said.
Ashley McGuire, Senior Fellow with The Catholic Association, added: “In withdrawing from Title X, Planned Parenthood has made it crystal clear that abortion is its number one priority. Planned Parenthood could have chosen to make the investment to restructure to be compliant with federal law, or they could have chosen to abandon abortion altogether and focus instead on women’s health. Instead, the abortion chain is walking away from tens of millions of dollars earmarked to help low income women.
“Recently-fired president Dr Leana Wen said she was ousted because she wanted to promote comprehensive women’s health over abortion. Once again, Planned Parenthood is placing abortion above all else, most especially the low income women they claim to be serving.”
In June, the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals granted the Trump administration’s request to lift national injunctions ordered by lower federal courts in Oregon and Washington state, as well as a statewide injunction in California.
That set up implementation of the new rule — which the administration is currently putting in place.
But Planned Parenthood made one last-ditch effort to get the 9th Circuit to stop the pro-life rules, which it declined to do on Friday. A three-judge panel and an 11-judge panel have already said the rules can take effect while the administration appeals lower court rulings that blocked them. Oral arguments are next month.
The abortion giant petitioned for a stay against the Trump administration’s new pro-life rules in a letter to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. Its CEO falsely claimed defunding means women won’t get legitimate medical care, but defunding merely means Planned Parenthood won’t get federal funds because it won’t stop abortions.
Planned Parenthood was threatening to formally withdraw from Title X funding by August 19 unless a federal court intervenes. Without the intervention, defunding can proceed. Since Planned Parenthood has indicated it will refuse to follow the new rules — by putting abortion ahead of women’s health care — it will lose the entirety of its funding. There are 4 000 Title X service sites across the nation, with Planned Parenthood representing fewer than 400 and other centers would be eligible for its funding.
Last May, the Trump administration published a new proposal for Title X that would prohibit Planned Parenthood and other abortion businesses from receiving any of those tax dollars unless they completely separate their abortion businesses from their taxpayer-funded services. That means housing their family planning services in separate buildings with separate staff from their abortion businesses and a denial of funds if they fail to do so. Most Planned Parenthood entities are not expected to comply.
“We thank President Trump for taking decisive action to disentangle taxpayers from the big abortion industry led by Planned Parenthood,” said SBA List President Marjorie Dannenfelser.
She told LifeNews: “The Protect Life Rule does not cut family planning funding by a single dime, and instead directs tax dollars to entities that provide healthcare to women but do not perform abortions. The Title X programme was not intended to be a slush fund for abortion businesses like Planned Parenthood, which violently ends the lives of more than 332 000 unborn babies a year and receives almost $60 million a year in Title X taxpayer dollars. We thank President Trump and Secretary Azar for ensuring that the Title X programme is truly about funding family planning, not abortion.”
National Right to Life president Carol Tobias also praised President Trump and noted that the decision doesn’t adversely affect women’s health because the federal funds will go to legitimate family planning efforts instead of places that kill babies in abortions.
“We thank President Trump and Health & Human Services Secretary Azar for their numerous actions to restore pro-life policies,” she told LifeNews. “We are encouraged to see the announcement of Title X regulations that are back in line with previous policy that prevents federal dollars from being used to directly or indirectly promote abortion domestically.”
According to National Right to Life, during the Reagan Administration, regulations were issued, with National Right to Life’s strong support, to restore the original character of Title X by prohibiting referral for abortion except in life-endangering circumstances. Additionally, abortion facilities could not generally share the same location with a Title X site.
In the 1991 Rust v Sullivan decision, the US Supreme Court found similar regulations permissible.
However, the Clinton Administration would later reverse these regulations.
A recent Marist poll found that, by a double-digit margin, a majority of all Americans oppose any taxpayer funding of abortion (54% to 39%).