Trump reverses Obama-era rule on Planned Parenthood, abortion provider funding

In this March 31, 2017, photo, President Donald Trump listens during a meeting with the National Association of Manufacturers in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington.

AP

Last Updated Apr 13, 2017 3:45 PM EDT

President Trump signed legislation Thursday allowing states to withhold federal family planning funds from Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers.

The measure overturns a rule finalized in the last days of the Obama administration that said states could deny family planning funds to an organization only if it were incapable of providing those services. The Senate passed the bill in late March and required Vice President Mike Pence -- acting in the capacity of president of the Senate -- to break the tie.

NARAL communications director Kaylie Hanson Long criticized Mr. Trump for signing the measure in an event not open to cameras.

“[H]e knows how wildly unpopular his actions are,” Long said in a statement. And she added, “If you have to hide what you’re doing, then you probably shouldn’t be doing it in the first place. Women and families deserve better.”

Last week, Politico reported that the president’s daughter, Ivanka Trump had requested a meeting with Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards. The pro-abortion group said that the purpose of the meeting was “to make sure that Ivanka fully understood what Planned Parenthood does, how it is funded,” said Planned Parenthood Executive Vice President Dawn Laguens, as quoted by Politico. “The main thing that Cecile Richards was doing was explaining that the money doesn’t actually go to abortions -- we get reimbursed the same way a hospital does. We were clearing up misinformation about how this works.