Appeals court again allows Trump family planning rules to go into effect

Appeals court again allows Trump family planning rules to go into effect
© ANNA GASSOT/AFP/Getty Images

A U.S. appeals court Friday again declined to block new rules from the Trump administration that prohibit clinics that receive federal funds from referring patients for abortions.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a request from more than 20 states, Planned Parenthood and the American Medical Association to suspend the rules while their case against them is litigated, according to The Associated Press.

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A three-judge panel and an 11-judge panel had already decided that the rules could go into effect while the administration appeals district court rulings against them. Oral arguments are slated to begin next month.

Planned Parenthood said this week it would leave the federal Title X program Monday unless the administration’s rules are blocked. The group stopped using Title X family planning funds last month after the restrictions were announced but told the Department of Health and Human Services it would stay in the program while it sues over the changes. 

Planned Parenthood has been a staple in the program for decades, serving about 40 percent of all Title X patients and receiving millions of dollars in federal funds. 

However, President TrumpDonald John TrumpAlaska Republican Party cancels 2020 primary Ukrainian official denies Trump pressured president Trump goes after New York Times, Washington Post: 'They have gone totally CRAZY!!!!' MORE and other Republicans maintain that taxpayer funds should not be directed to groups that perform abortions.

Planned Parenthood could still participate in the program if it agreed to stop providing and referring patients for abortions, but it has said that to do so would be submitting to bullying. 

“We refuse to let the Trump administration bully us into withholding abortion information from our patients. The gag rule is unethical and dangerous, and we will not subject our patients to it,” Alexis McGill Johnson, acting president and CEO of Planned Parenthood said earlier this month.