WASHINGTON D.C., DC — Idaho Senators Jim Risch and Mike Crapo along with Marsha Blackburn, R-Tennessee, proposed legislation backed by 24 other Republicans in what they say is a method to close loopholes when it comes to federal funds being used for abortion care.
Called the Title X Abortion Provider Prohibition Act, Risch says it will keep "taxpayer dollars out of the pockets of pro-abortion organizations."
According to Title X, a federal family planning program, no funds are legally allowed to go to abortion as a method of family planning. But senators say the legislation will prevent the Department of Health and Human Services from providing grants to entities that perform abortions.
The act would also take away Planned Parenthood taxpayer funding that could be used for abortion practices along with Title X clinics, a news release said. The legislation says that there would be exceptions for rape or incest or risk of death as well as hospitals, "unless they provide funds to non-hospital entities that perform abortions."
The legislation requires an annual report to Congress about who performs the abortions and a list of agencies performing abortions which receive the grants.
"Abortion providers must be cut off, once and for all, from loopholes allowing them to misappropriate taxpayer dollars to fund abortions," Crapo said in the news release.
It's unclear how many of these grants go to any entity that provide abortions, but according to the Guttmacher Institute, the federal government contributed funding to entities that provided only 160 abortions in the year of 2015 out of the 157,000 abortions that were covered by Medicaid.
Roe v. Wade, which protected abortion care, was overturned on June 24, 2022, leaving the legality of abortion up to the states. 17 states have now nearly banned abortion with certain exceptions for the length of the pregnancy or have banned abortion completely.
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