By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
Monday, January 23, 2017, President Donald J. Trump (R) signed an executive order reinstating “The Mexico City Policy” which states that foreign non-governmental organizations may not receive funding from the United States Federal government if they promote abortion as family planning.
US Representative Martha Roby (R-Montgomery) said in an email to constituents, “Mere days after President Obama took office in 2009, he overturned the Mexico City Policy, a longstanding policy instituted by President Reagan that prohibits American taxpayer dollars from flowing to non-governmental organizations in other countries that provide or promote abortions. Today President Trump restored the Mexico City Policy, and I along with my pro-life colleagues took this decision as a welcome sign that the Trump Administration will be a powerful ally in advancing pro-life measures.”
Congresswoman Roby wrote, “Our foreign policy is shaped by our collective values, and supporting life is among our most sacred. Millions of Americans are firmly against abortion, and their tax dollars should not be used to support a practice they disagree with strongly. With President Trump’s action today and House action on HR7 as early as tomorrow, I believe our unified Republican government will demonstrate clearly and swiftly that America will act upon a renewed commitment to defending life, not destroying it.”
The policy gets its name from where it was first announced at the United Nations International Conference on Population in Mexico City in 1984 by President Ronald W. Reagan (R).
President Trump signed the order one day after the Anniversary of Roe V. Wade and just days ahead of the March for Life in Washington D.C.
US Representative Bradley Byrne (R-Montrose) said, “Big news! President Trump just took three important executive actions:
(1) Started the withdrawal of the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal;
(2) Put in a place a federal hiring freeze; and
(3) Re-instituted the pro-life “Mexico City Policy” requiring that non-governmental organizations receiving federal refrain from performing or promoting abortion.”
Rep. Roby said, “Yesterday marked the 44th anniversary of the infamous Roe v. Wade decision, and we should all spend time in prayer and remembrance for the estimated 60 million unborn lives lost since this tragic ruling.”
Congresswoman Roby announced, “In recognition of these innocent lives, this week the House is taking action on HR7, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, which I have co-sponsored. Under Obamacare, taxpayer dollars are used to pay for Obamacare health plans that cover abortion, breaking from the longstanding Hyde Amendment that protects taxpayer dollars from being used to fund abortions through government programs like Medicaid. HR7 will make the Hyde Amendment and other current abortion funding prohibitions permanent and government-wide. The legislation will also ensure that Obamacare faithfully adheres to the Hyde Amendment while Congress works to repeal and replace the flawed health care law. I’m hopeful that the Republican-led House will pass H.R. 7 this week, taking a stand for life and advancing necessary protections for it.”
President Donald J. Trump (R) wrote, “I hereby revoke the Presidential Memorandum of January 23, 2009, for the Secretary of State and the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development (Mexico City Policy and Assistance for Voluntary Population Planning), and reinstate the Presidential Memorandum of January 22, 2001, for the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development (Restoration of the Mexico City Policy). I direct the Secretary of State, in coordination with the Secretary of Health and Human Services, to the extent allowable by law, to implement a plan to extend the requirements of the reinstated Memorandum to global health assistance furnished by all departments or agencies.”
Pres. Trump continued, “I further direct the Secretary of State to take all necessary actions, to the extent permitted by law, to ensure that US taxpayer dollars do not fund organizations or programs that support or participate in the management of a program of coercive abortion or involuntary sterilization.”
President Reagan set the Mexico City Policy, as did Pres. George H Bush (R). Pres. William Jefferson “Bill” Clinton (D) rescinded that policy. It was restored by Pres. George W. Bush (R) and then overturned by Pres. Barack H. Obama (D).
The Chairman of the USCCB’s Committee on Pro-Life Activities, Cardinal Timothy Dolan applauded the action taken by President Trump restoring the Mexico City Policy and extending its requirements to all US global assistance. Cardinal Dolan said, “We applaud President Trump’s action today to restore the Mexico City Policy, which withholds taxpayer funds from foreign non-governmental organizations that promote or perform abortions overseas (often in violation of the host country’s own laws). This is a welcome step toward restoring and enforcing important federal policies that respect the most fundamental human right—the right to life—as well as the long-standing, bi-partisan consensus against forcing Americans to participate in the violent act of abortion.”
The US Council of Catholic Bishops cited a Marist Poll released on January 23, 2017, showing that an overwhelming majority (83 percent) of Americans support policies like the Mexico City Policy. This includes 73 percent of respondents who identify as “pro-choice.”