Title X clinics across the country provide free and discounted birth control, STD testing and other services to millions of low-income people. The groups argue that more people than ever need these services now that abortion is banned in a quarter of states and STD rates are at record highs.
“Congress had a clear directive and they failed to follow through,” said Planned Parenthood President Alexis McGill Johnson. “At a time when Roe v. Wade has been overturned and access to health care is increasingly under threat, this bill is not timely.”
HELP Chair Patty Murray (D-Wash.) He attributed the party’s failure to increase Title X funding to the Republicans’ “extreme position on reproductive rights” and said he will continue to fight for more money for the program next year.
“Making sure people can get birth control and cancer screenings simply shouldn’t be controversial,” she said.
As expected, the omnibus also maintains the Hyde Amendment, the decades-old engine that bans federal funding for abortion, as well as several other longstanding restrictions on government health insurance that covers the procedure . Democrats later promised to repeal those policies Roe was overruled, but was blocked by unanimous GOP opposition as well as senatorial dissent. Joe Manchin (DW.Va.) and other conservative Democrats.
Progressive health groups noted that with Republicans taking control of the House in 2023, this omnibus was the last chance for the foreseeable future to increase funding for family planning and repeal drivers like Hyde.