President Biden is preparing to reverse a Trump administration policy that bans U.S. funding for nongovernmental groups that provide or refer patients for abortions — the first of several steps reproductive rights advocates hope to see from the government. the Biden administration.
In prepared remarks released by the White House on Thursday, Dr. Anthony Fauci told the World Health Organization’s board that Biden would soon revoke the Mexico City policy “as part of his broader commitment to protect the women’s health and to advance gender equality at home and around the world.”
The policy, first instituted by the Reagan administration, has since oscillated between Republican and Democratic presidents. Asset restored and expanded the policy, which critics describe as a “gag rule”, days after he took office. Analysis published in 2019 in the medical journal The Lancet found that the Mexico City policy increased the abortion rate in at least some affected countries, probably because it has also reduced access to contraception.
trump later cut funding through the federal Title X family planning program to national health care providers who perform or refer patients for abortion, prompting organizations such as Planned Parenthood to withdraw from the program. Both actions by the Trump administration have been hailed by anti-abortion rights groups, which oppose public funding of organizations involved in any way with abortion or abortion referrals. .
Asked about the issue by a reporter from the Catholic network EWTN during the Biden administration’s first briefing at the White House on Wednesday evening, press secretary Jen Psaki said she would have more information in the coming days and said noted that Biden was “a devout Catholic, and someone who goes to church regularly.”
Reproductive rights groups are calling on Biden to reverse a long list Trump administration policies related to abortion, contraception and reproductive health. They are also pushing for a reversal of the Hyde Amendment, a longstanding ban on federal funding for most abortions. Biden had long supported the Hyde Amendment, but reversed this position during his run for the 2020 Democratic nomination.