President Donald Trump’s budget proposal and Republicans’ American Health Care Act would together deny all federal funding to Planned Parenthood through both discretionary Title X grants and Medicaid. A fact sheet published by the Office of Management and Budget reads, “The budget also follows through on a campaign promise and prohibits any funding in the Labor-HHS appropriations bill for certain entities that provide abortions, including Planned Parenthood.” Furthermore, it says, “This prohibition applies to all funds in the bill, including Medicaid.”
 
According to the Congressional Research Service report, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) determined that Planned Parenthood Federation of America affiliates received $400.56 million in Medicaid reimbursements in 2012. In addition, the GAO found that Planned Parenthood affiliates received $64.35 million in Title X money that year. In its annual report for 2012-2013, Planned Parenthood said that it committed 327,166 abortions in fiscal 2012.
 
The American Health Care Act includes language that would prohibit any federal funding from going to a non-profit organization that is primarily engaged in contraception and abortion, that received in excess of $350 million in Medicaid money in 2014, and that provides abortion other than in cases of rape, incest, or when the life of the mother is in danger.
 
“CBO expects that, according to those criteria, only Planned Parenthood Federation of America and its affiliates and clinics would be affected,” said the CBO analysis of the AHCA. “Most federal funds received by such entities come from payments for services provided to enrollees in states’ Medicaid programs.”
 
Title X is the federal grant program for “family planning” organizations. “The federal government provides grants for family planning services through the Family Planning Program, Title X of the Public Health Service Act,” explains the Congressional Research Service. “Enacted in 1970, it is the only domestic federal program devoted solely to family planning and related preventive health services.”
 
Trump’s budget proposal says in part: 
 
SEC. 520. (a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, none of the funds made available by this Act may be made available either directly, through a State (including through managed care contracts with a State), or through any other means, to a prohibited entity.
(b) PROHIBITED ENTITY.—The term "prohibited entity" means an entity, including its affiliates, subsidiaries, successors, and clinics— (1) that, as of the date of enactment of this Act…
(C) performs, or provides any funds to any other entity that performs, abortions, other than an abortion—(i) if the pregnancy is the result of an act of rape or incest; or (ii) in the case where a woman suffers from a physical disorder, physical injury, or physical illness that would, as certified by a physician, place the woman in danger of death unless an abortion is performed, including a life endangering physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy itself; and
(2) for which the total amount of Federal grants to such entity, including grants to any affiliates, subsidiaries, or clinics, under title X of the Public Health Service Act in fiscal year 2016 exceeded $23,000,000.”
 
The OMB says this language cuts Title X funding for Planned Parenthood. 
 
In September 2016, in the midst of his presidential campaign, Trump sent a letter to pro-life leaders vowing to defund Planned Parenthood so long as it performs abortions. “I am committed to…Defunding Planned Parenthood as long as they continue to perform abortions, and re-allocating their funding to community health centers that provide comprehensive health for women,” Trump said in that letter.
 
The Planned Parenthood Action Fund released a statement in a blog that attacked the president for pulling its government funding: 
 
“In an unprecedented move, Trump’s budget singles out women who access Planned Parenthood for basic, preventive health care,” said the Planned Parenthood Action Fund blog. “For the first time in history, the president’s budget prohibits Planned Parenthood from participating in ANY program funded through Congress’s annual Labor-HHS bill.”
 

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Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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