SACRAMENTO – California Attorney General Xavier Becerra today criticized the Trump-Pence Administration for issuing its Title X family planning final rule. The new rule restricts access to critical preventive healthcare and access to birth control and prohibits doctors from discussing abortion with patients, including providing referrals for abortion.
“This rule is reckless and dangerous for women. The Trump-Pence Administration has yet again shown its deliberate disregard for women’s reproductive freedom and the rule of law,” said Attorney General Becerra. “If the Administration cared about women’s health, it would hear the thousands of voices opposing a rule that interferes in women’s medical decisions and access to care. We stand ready to take any and all legal action to protect women’s health and rights.”
On May 22, 2018, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released a dubious proposed rule that would place several harmful restrictions on the Title X program. California benefits from the largest Title X program in the nation. The program funds healthcare providers throughout the State to support preventive care, including critical reproductive healthcare. Attorney General Becerra announced his opposition shortly after the proposed rule became public. On July 18, 2018, Attorney General Becerra requested that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) reopen its review of the rule given the drastic and insufficient reasoning of the Administration’s proposed changes. On July 30, 2018, he led a coalition of 13 attorneys general in filing a comment letter opposing the Trump-Pence Administration’s proposal. Attorney General Becerra also filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request seeking answers about the proposal on August 28, 2018. On February 15, 2019, the California Department of Justice met with officials at OMB alongside 13 States and the District of Columbia to discuss the harmful effects of this rule, including costs to the state and burdens to women. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services did not participate in this meeting.