A federal appeals court refused Thursday to block the Trump administration’s Title X family-planning rules from taking effect, keeping in place newly instated requirements preventing grant recipients from referring clients for abortions. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a plea from 20 states and the District of Columbia, as well as abortion providers like Planned Parenthood, to impose an emergency stay after lifting June 20 preliminary injunctions ordered by lower courts in California, Oregon and Washington. In February, the Department of Health and Human Services overhauled rules governing Title X grants for family-planning services to low-income patients, prohibiting recipients from using the funds to “perform, promote, refer to, or support abortion as a method of family planning.” The rule change could cost Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider, as much as $60 million per year, although the Title X grants represent only a small percentage of the organization’s half-billion in annual federal funding. Pro-life groups cheered the court for standing by its earlier ruling. All seven of the judges who voted to deny the emergency stay were appointed by Republicans—including two chosen by President Trump—while the four who voted in the minority were named by Democrats. “This is a victory for commonsense, life-affirming policy,” said Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America. “The Protect Life rule ensures that the people helping women plan for families are not misusing appointments to market abortions at taxpayer expense.” She added that “Title X had become a marketing slush fund for Planned Parenthood, and the Trump Administration and the American people won today.” The Title X overhaul opened the door for pro-life pregnancy centers to receive funds by removing the requirement for “nondirective counseling on abortion.” In March, the Obria Group of California became the first such center to receive a Title X grant. The rule also requires a “clear financial and physical separation” between abortion procedures and other family-planning services, a mandate scheduled to take effect in March 2020. Planned Parenthood blasted the court’s refusal to block “the Title X gag rule,” calling it “devastating.” “This is devastating news,” said Planned Parenthood president Leana Wen. “While we are incredibly concerned the panel did not recognize the harm of the Trump-Pence administration’s gag rule, we will not stop fighting for the millions across the country in need for care.” Jeanne Mancini, president of the March for Life, said that abortion “is neither health care nor family planning and therefore should not be funded by the Title X program.” “This regulation helps to get taxpayers out of the abortion business, without cutting resources for those in need, and is a victory for all Americans,” she said.
Agreed 100! This is a victory for all hard-working American tax payers. To be clear, this isn’t about abortion, or outlawing it…or anything like that. It’s simply a rare common-sense ruling by the otherwise left-leaning 9th Circuit agreeing with the Trump Administrations prohibition against using Title X funds for abortions. That’s it. And, it’s about time. It’s hopefully the first step in stopping ALL federal tax-payer funding of Planned Parenthood entirely. And, again, this has NOTHING to do with abortions, or their legality. It’s simply about forcing tax-payers to pay for them; a large percentage of whom have moral objections to such procedures. If someone wants to undergo that procedure, that’s their business. But, the rest of us shouldn’t be forced to pay for it. That’s the bottom line. I don’t say this very often..but.. Kudos to the 9th Circuit Court for this decision.
A D.C. federal appeals court ruled Friday that the House of Representatives does not have to allow a self-described atheist to deliver secular prayers. The Good Friday ruling concerned efforts by Dan Barker, co-president of the Freedom from Religion Foundation, to pray in the House chamber as a guest chaplain — only to be turned down by Father Patrick Conroy, the House chaplain. The court, however, sided with Conroy in determining the House was in its right to require prayers be religious in nature. “We could not order Conroy to allow Barker to deliver a secular invocation because the House permissibly limits the opening prayer to religious prayer. Barker has therefore failed to state a claim for which relief can be granted,” the opinion stated. Article I, Section 5 of the Constitution declares that both the House and Senate “may determine the rules of its proceedings.” Barker had alleged that Conroy rejected him “because he is an atheist.” But the court determined that while that may be true, the House requirement that prayers be religious holds weight. “In other words, even if, as Barker alleges, he was actually excluded simply for being an atheist, he is entitled to none of the relief he seeks,” the opinion said. The tradition of House and Senate prayers goes back to 1789. The House and Senate both begin their legislative days with a religious invocation, frequently delivered by Conroy and his Senate counterpart Barry Black.
Score one for the Constitution..and freedom OF religion; not freedom FROM religion. Our founders would have been proud of this court ruling. Glad that sh_t disturbing, self-righteous, rabble-rousing, Christian-hating Dan Barker was smacked down. Excellent! 🙂