The leadership of the U.S. Bishops Conference (USCCB) has denounced a move by the Biden administration to reintegrate abortion funding into the federal Title X family planning program.
“On Thursday, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services published a proposed rule to reverse ‘The Protect Life Rule,’” the bishops note on their website, “a regulation issued by the Trump Administration in 2019 to clearly separate abortion from family planning in the federal Title X family planning program.”
“This policy change will allow the Title X program to become an indirect funding avenue for abortion providers,” Kansas City Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, chairman of the USCCB Committee on Pro-Life Activities, declared in a statement Friday.
“In spite of explicit prohibitions in Federal law and clear congressional intent that abortion may not be a part of this program,” the archbishop observed, “it has repeatedly been coopted by abortion supporters as a funding stream for organizations, programs, and facilities that directly promote and provide abortions.”
While the USCCB has always had strong objections to government promotion and funding of contraceptives, we have also long supported clear financial and physical separation between Title X-funded projects and programs and facilities where abortion is a method of family planning.
The proposed rule is “terrible policy,” he continued, because it would “reintegrate abortion into what is supposed to be a pre-pregnancy family planning program.”
“I strongly urge the Biden Administration to suspend this proposed rule and leave the Title X program as it was intended and authorized to be – a program entirely separate from abortion,” he concluded.
Joe Biden has been colliding with the U.S. bishops ever since his election. As a self-declared Catholic who repudiates Church teaching on numerous major issues of justice and morals, Biden has earned repeated censures from the Catholic hierarchy.
In January, the bishops condemned Biden’s reinstatement of taxpayer-funded abortions around the world by repealing the Mexico City policy.
“It is grievous that one of President Biden’s first official acts actively promotes the destruction of human lives in developing nations,” they said.
“This Executive Order is antithetical to reason, violates human dignity, and is incompatible with Catholic teaching. We and our brother bishops strongly oppose this action,” the bishops declared in a statement.
Archbishop Naumann has urged the president to stop calling himself a “devout Catholic” because his actions belie this claim.
“The president should stop defining himself as a devout Catholic and acknowledge that his view on abortion is contrary to Catholic moral teaching,” Naumann said. “It would be a more honest approach from him to say he disagreed with his Church on this important issue and that he was acting contrary to Church teaching.”
“When he says he is a devout Catholic, we bishops have the responsibility to correct him,” the archbishop said. “Although people have given this president power and authority, he cannot define what it is to be a Catholic and what Catholic moral teaching is.”
Mr. Biden is “usurping the role of the bishops and confusing people,” Naumann said. “He’s declaring that he’s Catholic and is going to force people to support abortion through their tax dollars.”
“The bishops need to correct him, as the president is acting contrary to the Catholic faith,” he added.
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