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Bernie Sanders to reverse federal funding bans on abortion groups if elected president

Bernie Sanders to reverse federal funding bans on abortion groups if elected president

Democratic U.S. presidential candidate Bernie Sanders reacts to the primary election results in the states of Florida, Ohio and Illinois during a campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona, March 15, 2016. | Reuters/Nancy Wiechec

Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., a Democratic candidate for president, would likely sign executive orders reversing President Trump's policies banning taxpayer funding of groups that promote or provide abortions, such as Planned Parenthood, if elected president. 

The Washington Post reported Thursday that it reviewed an internal campaign document listing potential executive orders the Democratic Socialist would sign on his first day in office, if elected. 

“The list of potential executive orders includes unilaterally allowing the United States to import prescription drugs from Canada, directing the Justice Department to legalize marijuana, and declaring climate change a national emergency while banning the exportation of crude oil,” the Post said.

“Other options cited in the document include canceling federal contracts for firms paying workers less than $15 an hour and reversing federal rules blocking U.S. funding to organizations that provide abortion counseling,” the document reportedly says

The potential Sanders executive orders on abortion contrasts with the executive orders made by Trump that have been aimed at limiting taxpayer funding of abortions.

In 2017, President Trump reinstituted the Mexico City Policy, which prohibits the government from providing foreign aid to organizations that perform or promote abortions abroad.

In February 2019, the Trump administration announced a new rule prohibiting the use of Title X funds for abortion as a mean of family planning.

“Pursuant to congressional mandate, family participation is to be encouraged, particularly in services involving adolescents. And, from the start, Congress was clear that Title X funds cannot be used to support abortion,” stated the Department of Health and Human Services at the time.

“This final rule ensures that grants and contracts awarded under this program fully comply with the statutory program integrity requirements, thereby fulfilling the purpose of Title X, so that more women and men can receive services that help them consider and achieve both their short-term and long-term family planning needs.”

The Washington Post also contrasted Sanders’ plans on potential executive orders to those of Democratic candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden, who has openly expressed a willingness to work alongside Republican lawmakers on various issues.

The report's release comes days before the Iowa Caucus, the first in the nation state contest among candidates vying to become the Democratic nominee for president.

According to poll numbers compiled by RealClearPolitics and accessed Friday, Sanders leads the field in Iowa with 23.8 percent, followed by Biden with 20.2 percent, and former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Peter Buttigieg with 15.8 percent.

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