Republican state attorneys general across the country sent a letter last week to the Biden administration threatening legal action if President Joe Biden’s Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) follows through on a proposal expanding taxpayer funding for abortion.
The Washington Free Beacon reported that the letter, authored by Ohio attorney general Dave Yost and signed by 20 other Republican state attorneys general, takes issue with a rule the Biden administration proposed on April 15, which reverses a Trump-era rule that required recipients of Title X family funding to physically separate abortion services from family planning services.
The Biden proposal would allow abortion providers to receive millions in taxpayer funding, which Yost wrote in the letter would put those recipients in “jeopardy of violating federal law.”
“Title X reflects a compromise. It funds services that large numbers of Americans support while withholding that funding from services that large numbers oppose,” the letter says. “The Proposed Rule tramples that compromise, by intertwining family-planning services with the divisive issue of publicly funded abortions.”
The attorneys general also request the Biden administration clarify the term “health equity,” since it could potentially lead to discrimination.
“All applicants must already indicate the number of patients served and the extent to which family planning services are needed locally, and grant priority is given to projects that serve low-income families. In addition, health programs that receive funding from the Department may not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability. Thus existing law requires nondiscriminatory treatment, aimed to those patients most in need. To the extent promoting health equity merely reiterates these requirements, such clarification is useful. To the extent promoting health equity differs, and either requires discrimination on the basis of race or should not be aimed at certain patients, such clarification would be necessary though likely contrary to law,” the letter says.
As the Free Beacon noted, the letter provides another area of contention for HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra, who is already under fire for the department’s handling of the border crisis.
“White House officials are frustrated with Becerra’s ineffective attempts to deal with a record number of unaccompanied minors illegally crossing the border, according to Politico. A group of congressional Republicans called for increased communication from the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Homeland Security over security concerns surrounding child trafficking at the border,” the Free Beacon reported.
Becerra also came under fire after falsely claiming that no federal law prohibited partial-birth abortion, even though he voted against a bill in 2003 that would ban partial-birth abortions.
“Becerra can hardly plead ignorance on this topic. As a freshman congressman, he voted against the ban. This shameless lie is standard for the most radical pro-abortion administration in history,” Susan B. Anthony List president Marjorie Dannenfelser told the Free Beacon.
This article has been revised for clarity.