COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD)- South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson has joined in an effort to challenge a federal rule change regarding abortion funding.
Led by Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost, the 12-state coalition is suing the Biden administration over a federal rule change that allows taxpayer dollars to be used ‘to support and encourage abortion.’
The lawsuit, filed Monday, does not challenge the constitutional right to abortion, set forth by Roe v Wade, but instead seeks to reinstate rule changes that required federally funded family-planning clinics to be physically and financially independent of abortion clinics and refrain from referring patients for abortion.
Family-planning clinics, called Title X clinics, were established in 1970 through The Family Planning Services and Population Research Act and provide access to contraceptives and preventative healthcare. In 2019, the Trump administration implemented a new rule that prohibited any Title X provider from mentioning abortion care to patients. In October, the Biden administration announced it would reverse the Trump-era policy, effective Nov. 8.
Back in May, Yost and a 20-state coalition sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services expressing their disagreement with overturning the 2019 rule. You can read that letter here.
“The Department of Health and Human Services knows it cannot legally subsidize abortion, so it’s trying to do it indirectly by putting family planning services and abortion services in the same place,” Attorney General Wilson said. “While fighting to protect the lives of unborn children is important enough on its own, we’re also fighting against a federal agency that’s trying to blatantly violate federal law.”
The Ohio-led challenge is joined by attorneys general in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina and West Virginia.