A federal judge sided with the Trump administration in a lawsuit brought by Planned Parenthood over new requirements for groups seeking to receive Title X family planning grants.
U.S. District Judge Trevor McFadden, a Trump appointee, said in his decision that Planned Parenthood and the other plaintiffs are asking “this Court to intervene before anything of legal effect has occurred.”
Planned Parenthood filed the lawsuit over the Trump administration’s decision to assist family planning projects that “promote optimal health outcomes” and might include “family planning methods and services, including information, education and counseling related to family planning, preconception care, contraception, natural family planning and infertility services.”
The abortion business asked the court to throw out the changes, claiming they are illegal because the administration did not follow a formal rulemaking process that includes a public notice and comment period.
“[C]ourts cannot review substantive objections to a non-final agency action, nor can they require formal rulemaking for a change in agency procedure,” McFadden wrote, however. “Even if I reached the merits, the Government’s challenged priorities align with Title X’s commitment to ‘voluntary family planning projects … offer[ing] a broad range of acceptable and effective family planning methods and services.”
Planned Parenthood also claimed the new requirements to receive grants are against the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) recommendations for various forms of contraception because the changes embrace abstinence and natural family planning.
The Title X program connects 4 million people with birth control, STI testing, and breast and cervical exams.
— Planned Parenthood Action (@PPact) May 2, 2018
The Trump administration is “trying to push people toward abstinence or pressure women into marriage — instead of helping them get quality health care,” said Dr. Gillian Dean, senior director of medical services at Planned Parenthood, according to the Hill.
Dawn Laguens, executive vice president of Planned Parenthood, also said, “The Trump-Pence administration is trying to impose its ideology on people — no matter how many it hurts.”
“They are trying to tell women what kind of birth control to use, they are trying to keep people from getting comprehensive reproductive health care and from going to Planned Parenthood health centers,” she added. “We will never stop fighting for people’s health and rights. No matter what.”
The abortion industry has long espoused the notion that contraception and abortion are “health care.” Former Planned Parenthood president and CEO Cecile Richards testified in 2015 before the House Oversight Committee that “abortion is health care.”
In February, the Trump administration announced the grant program under the Title X family planning program that has $260 million available to grantees that do not perform abortions.
The administration said it was seeking to support groups and organizations that provide quality, comprehensive health care for women, teens, and families, and that encourage healthy decision-making.
Organizations like Planned Parenthood, however, have promoted the “morning after” pill and abortions for illegal immigrants.
Some 100 national and state pro-life organizations joined together with 200 members of Congress to urge the Trump administration to revise Title X family planning funding rules in order to ban abortion providers like Planned Parenthood from receiving funds.
The case is Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin, Inc. et al. v. Alex M. Azar II, in his official capacity as United States Secretary of Health and Human Services, et al., in United States District Court for the District of Columbia, Case No. 1:18-cv-01035 (TNM).