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Trump proposes cutting Planned Parenthood funds


 

The planned revival of a policy dating to Ronald Reagan’s presidency may finally present a way for President Donald Trump to fulfill his campaign promise to “defund” Planned Parenthood. Or at least to evict it from the federal family planning program, where it provides care to more than 40% of that program’s 4 million patients.

Congress last year failed to wipe out funding for Planned Parenthood, because the bill faced overwhelming Democratic objections and would not have received the 60 votes needed to pass in the Senate.

But the imposition of a slightly retooled version of a regulation, which was upheld by the Supreme Court in 1991 after a 5-year fight, could potentially accomplish what Congress could not.

The rules now under review, according to Trump administration officials, would require facilities receiving federal family planning funds to be physically separate from those that perform abortion; would eliminate the requirement that women with unintended pregnancies be counseled on their full range of reproductive options; and would ban abortion referrals.

All those changes would particularly affect Planned Parenthood.

Planned Parenthood, which provides a broad array of reproductive health services to women and men, also provides abortion services using nonfederal funds. Cutting off funding has been the top priority for anti-abortion groups, which supported candidate Trump.

“A win like this would immediately disentangle taxpayers from the abortion business and energize the grassroots as we head into the critical midterm elections,” Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the anti-abortion Susan B. Anthony List, said in a statement.

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