Trump Makes the Global Gag Rule on Abortion Even Worse

This article originally appeared on this site.

In 1984, at a population conference in Mexico City, the Reagan Administration brought domestic abortion politics into the arena of international aid for the first time. The Administration declared that “the United States does not consider abortion an acceptable element of family planning programs and will no longer contribute to those of which it is a part.” The so-called Mexico City Policy has been in effect for seventeen of the past thirty-two years—espoused by every Republican Administration, renounced under every Democratic one, including that of President Barack Obama. One of the policy’s requirements is that the United States not contribute to nongovernmental organizations that “perform or actively promote abortion as a method of family planning in other nations.” To receive American funding for any of their family-planning work, in other words, groups would have to promise that they wouldn’t even speak of abortion—hence the nickname that the policy’s exasperated critics soon coined: the global gag rule.

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