Friday, December 23, 2016

Through HHS Rule, Obama Bars States From Defunding Abortion Providers

By Josh Denton
Live Action News

In one of his likely last moves before leaving office, the Obama administration’s Department of Health and Human Services issued a new federal regulation prohibiting states from defunding abortion providers like Planned Parenthood.

The press release issued by HHS said that the purpose of the final rule was to protect access to family planning services:

In the past several years, a number of states have taken actions to restrict participation by certain types of providers as subrecipients in the Title X Program, unrelated to the provider’s ability to provide family planning services. This has caused limitations in the geographic distribution of services and decreased access to services.

The final rule clarifies the Title X program regulations by adding that no grant recipient making subawards for the provision of services as part of its Title X project may prohibit an entity from participating for reasons other than its ability to provide Title X services.

In essence, this means that HHS is attempting to block states from restricting fund to abortion providers like Planned Parenthood. The Federalist notes:
Federal law stipulates that tax dollars cannot fund abortions, yet a growing number of states and lawmakers are concerned that federal funds going to contraception clinics that also provide abortions is enabling the provision of abortion. Funds are fungible, which means that once an entity gets its hands on taxpayer dollars, the government no longer has control over how exactly that money is spent.

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