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Democratic Governors Threaten to Sue Over Trump's Abortion Rule

Democratic governors are threatening to sue the Trump administration over a proposed rule that would force Planned Parenthood to give up its federal grants or keep family-planning and abortion-related services under different roofs.

Democratic governors are threatening to sue the Trump administration over a proposed rule that would force Planned Parenthood to give up its federal grants or keep family-planning and abortion-related services under different roofs.

"If this reckless policy is finalized as written, we will have no choice but to explore all possible avenues, including legal options, to block it from harming the women in our states," Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and 13 fellow members of the Democratic Governors Association wrote in a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar. "Our voices will be heard on this damaging proposal, and we are prepared to match our words with action."

Earlier this month, the Trump administration announced that it would develop a new rule governing so-called Title X family-planning funds to make it harder for providers of abortions and related services to obtain federal money. While it is already illegal to use taxpayer funds for abortion, Planned Parenthood and similar groups use federal grants for other women's health care services while using private money for abortion-related services — often at the same facilities and with the same personnel.

Caroline Cournoyer is GOVERNING's senior web editor.
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