The Trump administration said this week that Planned Parenthood will not receive any of the coronavirus-relief funding earmarked for small businesses that are struggling amid the pandemic.
The administration will not grant the mammoth abortion provider any funding from the $670 billion Paycheck Protection Program, according to reports.
“Through the Paycheck Protection Program, President Trump is delivering vital relief to help small businesses keep employees on payroll,” a senior administration official told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
“It’s clear that the abortion industry shouldn’t be able to qualify for those funds, which are desperately needed by small businesses,” the official said.
The Trump administration is committed to making sure relief funding lands in the hands of small businesses so they can save jobs, “not getting the government into the business of funding abortion,” a senior administration official told The Daily Signal.
“While not all Americans share President Trump’s pro-life beliefs, there is broad bipartisan support for the idea that American taxpayers should not have to fund abortion,” that official added.
The PPP forgives government loans of businesses with 500 employees or fewer as long as they retain most of their employees, although the businesses must still pay interest on those loans, a requirement supervised by the Small Business Administration.
Despite having small affiliates across the country that employ fewer than 500 people, Planned Parenthood’s corporate structure precludes it from eligibility for the funds, the administration said. Because the largest abortion provider in the country retains a total of about 16,000 employees, it does not qualify for PPP funds.
The administration’s assurance that it will not grant additional funding to Planned Parenthood to offset the effects of the pandemic comes as abortion advocates have protested attempts by several states to count abortions as nonessential medical procedures. Ohio, Texas, Alabama, Iowa, Oklahoma, and Arkansas sought to temporarily block abortions during the public health emergency, although they have been largely unsuccessful after being met with legal challenges.
The Trump administration has made curbing funding to Planned Parenthood a priority. The abortion provider withdrew last year from Title X, the country’s family-planning program for low-income patients, over a Trump administration rule barring groups who provide abortions or abortion referrals from receiving Title X funds.
Congressional Republicans have repeatedly pushed to strip Planned Parenthood of the $500 million in federal tax dollars the organization receives annually, but their efforts have been unsuccessful.