Last month, Vice President Mike Pence cast the tie-breaking vote in the Senate to pass a Congressional Review Act (CRA) which rolls back Obama-era regulations on the distribution of Title X funds. Yesterday, President Trump signed that act into law. While no media was allowed in the Oval Office for the signing, the President was joined by two anti-abortion advocates, president of the Susan B. Anthony List Marjorie Dannenfelser, and Penny Nance, president of Concerned Women for America.
The Title X Family Planning Program, which dates back to Richard Nixon's presidency, is the only federal grant program specifically designated to provide family planning-related health services. While no federal money can legally pay for abortions, the Title X funds distributed to abortion-providing clinics cover contraceptives, STD and cancer screenings, and fertility and pregnancy-related care, among other services. One of the Obama Administration's final acts was to sign a law prohibiting states from denying Title X funding to Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers simply because they offer those services.
Now that this CRA has been signed into law, states can decide to allocate funds however they choose. In a statement posted on their website, Planned Parenthood's Executive Vice President Dawn Laguens said: "Planned Parenthood strongly opposes President Trump’s willingness to undermine millions of women’s access to birth control through the Title X family planning program. Four million people depend on the Title X family planning program, and by signing this bill, President Trump disregards their health and well-being." As they note elsewhere on their website, Title X funding provided 800,000 pap smears, 1 million breast exams, and 6 million STI tests in 2015 alone.