Limbaugh falsely claimed Clinton "imposed" international family planning funding policy
Research ››› ››› CHRISTINE SCHWEN
On Hannity, speaking of President Obama's reported plan to reverse the U.S. government's Mexico City policy restricting federal funding for international family planning groups, Rush Limbaugh falsely claimed "[former President] Clinton imposed it." In fact, the Mexico City policy prohibiting the federal government from providing funds to international family planning groups that promote abortion or provide information, counseling, or referrals about abortion services in other nations was imposed by President Reagan, rescinded by Clinton, and revived by George W. Bush.
On the January 21 edition of Fox News' Hannity, speaking of President Barack Obama's reported plan to issue an executive order rescinding the U.S. government's Mexico City policy on disbursing family planning funds, nationally syndicated radio host Rush Limbaugh falsely claimed "[former President Bill] Clinton imposed it, [former President] Bush rescinded it, Obama's going to re-impose it."
In fact, former President Ronald Reagan first imposed the Mexico City policy, which prohibits the federal government from providing funds to international family planning groups that promote abortion or provide information, counseling, or referrals about abortion services in other nations. The policy, named for the city hosting the United Nations International Conference on Population in 1984 where the policy was announced, reportedly caused the U.S. Agency for International Development to cut off support for The International Planned Parenthood Federation -- which had been receiving about $15 million annually from the agency -- when the group refused to abide by the restrictions on funding. Clinton issued a memorandum to rescind the policy in 1993, but Bush reinstated the policy in 2001.
In his "Memorandum for the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development" reinstating the Mexico City policy, Bush said:
The Mexico City Policy announced by President Reagan in 1984 required nongovernmental organizations to agree as a condition of their receipt of Federal funds that such organizations would neither perform nor actively promote abortion as a method of family planning in other nations. This policy was in effect until it was rescinded on January 22, 1993.
It is my conviction that taxpayer funds should not be used to pay for abortions or advocate or actively promote abortion, either here or abroad. It is therefore my belief that the Mexico City Policy should be restored. Accordingly, I hereby rescind the "Memorandum for the Acting Administrator for the Agency for International Development, Subject: AID Family Planning Grants/Mexico City Policy," dated January 22, 1993, and I direct the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development to reinstate in full all of the requirements of the Mexico City Policy in effect on January 19, 1993.
From the January 21 edition of Fox News' Hannity:
HANNITY: Let's take that a step further here, because, all throughout the election, we all talked about the Chicago way, his radical friends, associates, et cetera.
HANNITY: His past voting record -- by the way, I brought it up a lot, you brought it up a lot, we all talked about it -- what -- do you think he really is that and people either ignored it, people don't care, or is he just somebody who is politically expedient? That's what he had to do in Chicago?
LIMBAUGH: We don't know. See, this is the thing. Now, normally, we would have -- a mainstream media would have vetted this guy and we would know this. We don't know what he is. That's the whole point. And people don't care what he is. They don't care who he is. They care that he's black. They care that he's historic. They care that -- they think he's an intellectual because of the way he speaks. It's all about how he speaks. I mean, I look at some of the facial expressions of people when they're watching the guy, and it's frightening.
But I'm a thinker. And a lot of people, I guess, aren't. People are emotional, and they react emotionally to things, and if he makes them feel good, especially in economic bad times, then that's all they're really going to care about. But I -- I have to assume that he is who he is, and his radical associations are certainly things that have defined him. I mean, if you look at the executive orders that he's promised to issue, he's going to overturn the abortion law that has guided who we fund overseas in terms of family planning, and that's been a roller coaster.
You know, Clinton imposed it, Bush rescinded it, Obama's going to re-impose it and so forth. He's going to issue an executive order to close Guantánamo Bay, but it ain't going to happen for four years.