By Matt Sande, Director of Legislation
On Friday the federal Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) finalized a rule change that effectively strips abortion providers of federal Title X family planning funding. It would do so by requiring abortion providers to demonstrate a “clear financial and physical separation between Title X funded projects and programs or facilities where abortion is a method of family planning,” by prohibiting “referral for abortion as a method of family planning,” and by eliminating the “requirement that Title X providers offer abortion counseling and referral.”
The new federal rule prohibiting Title X funding of facilities that perform or refer for abortion will deliver a significant blow to Planned Parenthood Federation of America, our nation’s largest abortion provider. Planned Parenthood receives between $50 and $60 million annually from the $287 million Title X program. The Trump Administration respects the consciences of American taxpayers who oppose the use of public funds to directly or indirectly subsidize abortion. All money is fungible. Family planning funds undeniably free up resources within receiving organizations, like Planned Parenthood, to engage in the abortion business.
Planned Parenthood has deceived our children by fostering a false sense of security about “safe sex,” and has profited greatly from selling abortions to teen girls whose birth control fails. And despite their protestations, we know they have engaged in the grisly trade of aborted baby body parts. Abortion is not healthcare. Planned Parenthood Federation of America, a non-profit organization with a net worth of over $127 million that profits from killing unborn babies and exploits women in distress, should not be considered a healthcare provider. Washington cannot continue to throw money at organizations that perform or refer for abortions.
Planned Parenthood is far from the only provider of primary and preventive women’s health services. Across America, there are 13,540 clinics (Federally Qualified Health Clinics and Rural Health Clinics) providing comprehensive health care for women – as compared to only 665 Planned Parenthood locations. For every Planned Parenthood clinic in America, there are 20 comprehensive care clinics.
Pro-Life Wisconsin does not oppose public funding for basic health care services for low-income women, such as breast and cervical cancer exams, STD screenings, pap smears, mammograms, etc. Pro-Life Wisconsin does oppose confidential family planning services that include sterilizations, contraceptives, and the provision of chemically abortifacient drugs and devices, such as the morning-after pill, the patch and IUDs, to minor children and adults. But our bottom line is that no public funds, whatever their purpose, should ever go to Planned Parenthood and other organizations that perform or refer for abortions. Planned Parenthood can pay for these services themselves – not with the taxpayers’ money. Polls consistently demonstrate that Americans are opposed to taxpayer funding of abortions.
Over the last two years, Pro-Life Wisconsin and pro-life organizations across the country consistently urged the Republican Congress and President Trump to defund Planned Parenthood of all taxpayer dollars – well over $500 million annually! Their failure to accomplish this critical goal when they had the chance was almost unforgivable. Now they will have to win back the House from pro-abortion Democrats and retain the presidency in 2020. Nevertheless, we applaud President Trump for using his executive authority to slowly starve America’s abortion giant.