Donald Trump reinstates 'Mexico City Policy', banning international abortion funding

President Donald Trump reinstated the "Mexico City policy" on Monday, issuing an executive orderbarring foreign aid or federal funding for international nongovernmental organizations that promote or provide abortions.

"The United States will end the use of taxpayer dollars to fund abortion overseas, along with coercive abortions and sterilization practices," White House press secretary Sean Spicer said in the White House press briefing Monday, explaining the move.

The policy is also known as the "global gag rule;" it has been instituted by every Republican president since Ronald Reagan, and correspondingly rescinded by all Democratic presidents.

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Anti-abortion groups hailed Trump's move, while abortion rights groups lambasted it. The order comes one day after the 44th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision guaranteeing abortion rights. The victory for the anti-abortion camp also comes days ahead of the March for Life in Washington, D.C., scheduled for Friday.

"President Trump is continuing Ronald Reagan's legacy by taking immediate action on day one to stop the promotion of abortion through our tax dollars overseas," Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of Susan B. Anthony List, a prominent anti-abortion group, said in a statement. She added the move "sends a strong signal about his Administration's pro-life priorities."

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The president earlier in his career was "very pro-choice," but shifted on the issue by the time of the 2016 election. His convictions on the issue were questioned during the GOP primary.

But abortion rights group left no doubt that they were dismayed by the president Monday.

"It's telling that one of Trump's first executive actions combines two of his favorite things: silencing anyone who disagrees with him and repressing women," NARAL Pro-Choice America said in a statement, pointing out that the president's move comes only two days after the Women's March in Washington, D.C. and other areas.


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