Tucked inside the Biden administration’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus package is a provision to restore millions in government funding to Planned Parenthood.
The $1.9 trillion stimulus package Democrats say aims to reboot the economy provides a $50 million boost to the Title X family planning program, which under the Biden administration will supply abortion providers such as Planned Parenthood with government funds. The Trump administration had amended Title X to make abortion providers ineligible for the funds, which are intended for health services and family planning, but the change is in the process of being reversed, restoring a giant revenue stream for Planned Parenthood.
While the stimulus is intended to reboot an economy suffering the after-effects of COVID-19 and government restrictions on economic activity, it also features major progressive policy goals. In addition to expanding taxpayer funding for abortion services, the aid package also includes a provision to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. Senate Democrats are planning on using the budget reconciliation process to pass the package, meaning it can pass with just 50 votes in favor and Vice President Kamala Harris breaking the tie.
The boost to the Title X program comes after lengthy battles over Planned Parenthood’s role in government funding and stimulus packages. Some states declared abortion to be an essential service and allowed abortion clinics to remain open while others ordered the clinics to close as part of coronavirus-related shutdowns. In Pennsylvania, for example, Gov. Tom Wolf (D.) ordered all elective surgeries suspended during the crisis while exempting abortion clinics. States like Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Texas all moved to suspend abortion services, prompting legal battles. (Read more from “Dems Include Money for Abortion Providers in COVID Relief Bill” HERE)