Shortly after taking office, President Donald Trump signed an executive order re-instituting the Mexico City policy, also know as the global gag rule, which prevents groups that provide or promote abortion overseas from receiving U.S. aid money.
Yesterday, his administration took further executive action to modernize the policy, applying it to all foreign-health assistance provided by government agencies, including the State Department, U.S. Agency for International Development, the Office of the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator, and the Defense Department.
Prior to this move, the Mexico City policy applied only to family planning funds distributed for use in overseas aid programs by the State Department and USAID, roughly $600 million. Given this expansion, nearly $9 billion in federal aid money will be covered by the new policy, called “Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance.”
The Mexico City policy was first signed by President Ronald Reagan, and since then has been redacted during Democratic presidencies and reinstated by Republicans. In January, a Marist poll showed that 83 percent of Americans — including almost 40 percent of those who voted for Hillary Clinton last November — oppose federal funding of abortions overseas.