President Trump took decisive pro-life actions during his first 100 days in office affecting policies on abortion in the US and around the world.
In one of his first Executive Orders, President Trump reissued and expanded the Mexico City Policy (MCP) preventing foreign non-governmental organizations from receiving funds from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) unless they pledge to not perform or promote abortion as a method of family planning, regardless of the funding source. The policy previously only applied to monies from the population account but was extended to apply to “all global health assistance furnished by all departments or agencies”.
President Trump’s selection to the Supreme Court, Judge Neil Gorsuch, was confirmed and began his tenure on the Court. Judge Gorsuch is expected to have a pro-life position similar to the late Justice Anton Scalia. As a judge, Gorsuch ruled against the Obama administration’s HHS mandate and has written a book opposing the legalization of euthanasia and assisted suicide.
Legislation passed by Congress, House Joint Resolution 43, was signed by President Trump to allow states to distribute family planning funds, known as Title X, to non-abortion providers including community health centers, county health departments, or other types of providers. Previously, Obama’s Department of Health and Human Services had blocked states from choosing not to fund abortion providers.
President Trump cut-off US funds to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) due to its support for China’s coercive population control program. The administration explained that it was dropping the funding because UNFPA “supports, or participates in the management of, a program of coercive abortion or involuntary sterilization”. Funds currently allocated to UNFPA will be transferred to the “Global Health Account” where it will be used for family planning, maternal health and non-abortive reproductive health activities. The decision is based on application of existing U.S. law, the Kemp-Kasten Amendment, which was enacted for the first time in 1985 and prohibits foreign aid to any organization that the administration determines is involved in coercive abortion or involuntary sterilization.
Pro-life groups in the US reacted with words of thanks and appreciation. Father Frank Pavone of Priests for Life said, “As President Trump’s first term marks the completion of its first 100 days, I want to express on my own behalf and that of Priests for Life the gratitude we have to him and his Administration for the significant progress that has been made and victories that have been won for the cause of protecting children in the womb from abortion.”