President Barack Obama’s administration is drafting a new regulation which would override state laws that redirect federal funding away from its political ally — Planned Parenthood — towards competing healthcare providers.
The federal rule is aimed at the laws passed by states t0 redirect Title X family planning funding away from Planned Parenthood, following the organization’s alleged involvement in the illegal sale of body parts of aborted babies.
The proposed regulation is the “latest stunt from President Obama’s Department of Health and Human Services,” Rep. Diane Black, a member of the House Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives, said in a statement Tuesday.
“We’ve known all along that the Obama Administration will go to untold lengths to protect its friends in the big abortion industry,” Black, a registered nurse, said. “After all, this Administration has previously used backdoor maneuvers to line Planned Parenthood’s pockets with Obamacare navigator grants and praised the abortion provider’s ‘high ethical standard’ even after it was caught trafficking in baby body parts.”
Several states now redirect the federal funding to other Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) which provide more comprehensive medical services, but which do not provide abortions. Nationally, there are 13,000 FQHCs – a figure that outnumbers Planned Parenthood facilities by 20 to 1.
Nevertheless, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) asserts that by redirecting Title X funding away Planned Parenthood, the states “have interfered with” low-income individuals’ ability to access federal assistance quickly.
“Moreover, states that restrict eligibility of subrecipients have caused limitations in the geographic distribution of services, and decreased access to services through trusted and qualified providers,” HHS charges.
The Obama administration also uses the argument that no federal monies can be used for abortions anyway under the Hyde Amendment; therefore, Planned Parenthood should not be excluded from receipt of the Title X funding, based on the types of services it provides.
Ironically, Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and Planned Parenthood itself are threatening that, if Clinton is elected president, she will work to repeal the Hyde Amendment so that federal funds can be used to provide abortions to low-income, minority women especially.
Rep. Black responded.
They have taken the unprecedented step of thwarting states’ rights with a shady proposed rule change that prevents states from funding the providers who will best serve their citizens. In the coming days, I intend to lead a letter expressing the deep concerns of Members of Congress on this proposal, but we won’t stop there. We must use the full force of Congress and the grassroots strength of the national pro-life movement to defeat this absurd rule and prevent the Obama Administration from acting unilaterally to carry out political favors and prop up a scandal-ridden abortion provider.
Support for abortion on demand has declined in recent years and state legislatures’ approval of restrictions on abortion highlights this change.
A recent Marist College Institute for Public Opinion poll found a full 81 percent of Americans favor some restrictions on abortion — including limiting the procedure after the first three months — and a continued ban on public funding of abortion.
In the survey of 1,700 Americans, even 66 percent of respondents who identify themselves as pro-choice say, “Abortion should be allowed, at most, in the first trimester, in cases of rape, incest or to save the life of the mother, or never permitted.”
Without substantial genuine public support for abortion on demand, Planned Parenthood has had to rely largely on activist courts and the Obama administration’s directives and rules to block the will of the states.
The new rule comes after the Obama administration has threatened states attempting to defund the nation’s largest provider of abortions with potential violation of federal law and, ultimately, the complete cut-off of Medicaid funds to those states.