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February 23, 2021

Monday, the Supreme Court agreed to review a case challenging the Trump Administration’s “Protect Life Rule,” a change in Title X grant rules barring funds for family planning from going to facilities that perform or refer patients for abortions.

Federal funds aren’t supposed to be used for abortion, and polls show a strong majority of Americans support that policy, including nearly a third of Democrats. But pro-life groups argue that there’s no way to clearly separate such funds: if you give government money to a clinic that performs abortions, they can claim that it’s spent on other things, but that just frees up more money in the budget to spend on abortion.

Both sides expressed confidence that the SCOTUS would rule in their favor. I wish I could express more confidence, but it’s very hard to predict whether this Court will do the right thing, the wrong thing or nothing at all. Sadly, the point may be “moot” (to use one of the Court’s new favorite words) because it’s doubtful that any Trump rule protecting the lives of the unborn will survive in the Biden Administration.

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