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Obama Falsely Claims Bush Opposed Cutting Planned Parenthood Funds

by Steven Ertelt | Washington, DC | LifeNews.com | 10/16/12 10:01 PM

National

In an attempt to make Governor Mitt Romney look extreme on the issue of abortion, President Barack Obama falsely claimed during Tuesday night’s debate that President George W. Bush opposed cutting funding for the Planned Parenthood abortion business.

“Bush didn’t propose turning Medicare into voucher,or defund Planned Parenthood. Romney’s gone to more extreme place,” Obama claimed.

However, President George W. Bush during his first days in office, cut taxpayer funding for Planned Parenthood.

In 2001, Bush issued a memo ensuring that the Mexico City Policy prohibited the USAID agency from funding pro-abortion groups. The pro-life Mexico City Policy, first instituted during the Reagan administration, prohibits the federal government from giving taxpayer funds to international organizations that perform or promote abortions in other countries, including the International Planned Parenthood Federation.

Not only did Bush initially cut Planned Parenthood funding immediately after entering the White House, he cut it again in 2003 — issuing a memorandum to the State Department expanding his Mexico City Policy.

“Because family planning grants are awarded by the Department of State outside of USAID as well as through USAID, you are hereby directed to extend the requirements of the March 28, 2001, memorandum to all assistance for voluntary population planning furnished to foreign nongovernmental organizations,” Bush directed the agency.

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The memo made it clear that the pro-life policy applies to federal funding of all population programs funded by the State Department — even if they are not funded through USAID.

Representatives from pro-life groups told LifeNews.com they strongly supported Bush’s expanded policy.