The Associated Press reports that President Joe Biden and his administration are now “taking steps” to enact a new rule that will reverse former President Donald Trump’s Protect Life Rule.
“The proposed rule from the Department of Health and Human (HHS) Services follows through on President Joe Biden’s campaign promise to reverse his predecessor’s family planning policy, which was branded a ‘gag rule’ by women’s groups and decried by medical associations as violating the doctor-patient relationship,” the outlet reports.
In July of 2019, then-President Trump issued an executive order establishing the Protect Life Rule.
What the Protect Life Rule did was take Title X taxpayer funding away from those providers that “perform, promote, refer for, or support abortion as a method of family planning.” In total, it is reported that Trump’s move took about $60 million away from the abortion industry.
The Protect Life Rule itself goes back to President Ronald Reagan. What it specifically does is bar the “co-location” of federally funded clinics that provide family planning services with ones that provide abortions. In other words, it stops these two providers from being located in the same building.
Pro-abortion groups have been trying to use the courts to eliminate Trump’s Protect Life Rule. But, with Biden now as president, that effort is unnecessary.
This is because one of the first things that Biden did as president was sign an executive order, on January 28th, asking the HSS to review Title X family planning regulations “as soon as practicable” in order to advise him on “whether to suspend, revise, or rescind, or publish for notice and comment proposed rules suspending, revising, or rescinding, those regulations.”
Above is the background that led to the HHS’s announcement on Wednesday. What the department announced was a new rule that will, in effect, reverse Trump’s Protect Life Rule.
In its announcement, the HHS said that Trump’s rule “abandoned (a) client-centered approach over the objection of every major medical organization without any countervailing public health rationale.” The department added, “that approach cannot be squared with well-accepted public health principles.”
It ought to be noted that the HHS decided against immediately suspending Trump’s rule.
None of this comes as any surprise given Biden and HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra’s relationship to the abortion industry.
Planned Parenthood celebrated the HHS’s announcement on Wednesday, writing, “GREAT NEWS! The Biden-Harris admin just proposed ending the Title X gag rule! This dangerous policy undermines the only federal program dedicated to providing sexual and reproductive health care to people with low incomes.”