(CNSNews.com) - Rep. Lois Frankel (D-Fla.) on Wednesday accused the Trump administration of being “obsessed” with abortion.
At a House Appropriations Subcommittee hearing on the State Department’s 2020 budget proposal, Frankel cited Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s announcement Tuesday that the administration is expanding enforcement of the Mexico City policy, blocking non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that promote or perform abortions from receiving federal funds.
“Yesterday, you expanded the inhumane global gag rule,” Frankel said.. I’m telling you … your administration is abortion obsessed. You’re so obsessed with it that you-- the side effects are devastating the health and are going to continue to devastate the health of women around the world,” she said.
Frankel began her questioning by calling the State Department’s budget request “embarrassing and dangerous,” saying her concern was not so much what’s in the budget, “but really the cuts that are being made.”
She took issue with the budget cuts made to international family planning programs and the elimination of assistance to the UN Population Fund, which conservatives say encourage China’s coercive abortion and forced sterilization policy.
“You’re slashing international family planning programs by more than half. You’re eliminating all assistance to the UN Population Fund, which makes efforts to end child marriage and genital mutilation and seeks to have healthy babies born. You’re erasing the reproductive rights section from the annual Human Rights report. You’ve been pushing to remove reference to sexual and reproductive health care at the annual UN Commission on the Status of Women,” Frankel said.
When the administration cut funding of UNPF in 2017, the global organization released a statement, saying the decision was “based on the erroneous claim that UNFPA ‘supports, or participates in the management of, a programme of coercive abortion or involuntary sterilization’ in China.”
“UNFPA refutes this claim, as all of its work promotes the human rights of individuals and couples to make their own decisions, free of coercion or discrimination. Indeed, United Nations Member States have long described UNFPA’s work in China as a force for good,” it said at the time.