By Dave Andrusko
Pro-life President Donald Trump, addressing the United Nations General Assembly today, told world leaders
“Americans will also never tire of defending innocent life. We are aware that many United Nations projects have attempted to assert a global right to taxpayer funded abortion on demand, right up until the moment of delivery.
“Global bureaucrats have absolutely no business attacking the sovereignty of nations that wish to protect innocent life. Like many nations here today, we in America believe that every child, born and unborn, is a sacred gift from God.”
The President’s no-nonsense, straightforward defense of unborn life and national sovereignty came just one day after Alex Azar, the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, told a UN High Level Meeting on Universal Health Coverage of the UN General Assembly, there is “no international right to abortion.”
Speaking on behalf of the Trump administration and more than a dozen other countries, Secretary Azar said
“We do not support references to ambiguous terms and expressions, such as sexual and reproductive health and rights in U.N. documents, because they can undermine the critical role of the family and promote practices, like abortion, in circumstances that do not enjoy international consensus and which can be misinterpreted by U.N. agencies.”
“Such terms do not adequately take into account the key role of the family in health and education, nor the sovereign right of nations to implement health policies according to their national context. There is no international right to an abortion and these terms should not be used to promote pro-abortion policies and measures.”
The usual suspects criticized the United States’ position on life. Caitlin Horrigan, director of advocacy at Planned Parenthood Global, released a statement saying, in part, “It should come as no surprise the Trump-Pence administration is lobbying other countries to join them in working to undermine sexual and reproductive rights on a global scale at the United Nations. From day one, the Trump-Pence administration has tried to take away access to birth control and safe, legal abortion.”
She does have one thing right: the “day one” part.
The Trump administration’s pro-life posture was evident from its initial choice of personnel to its nomination of Supreme Court justices who respect the Constitution’s text and history, to opposition to funding for Planned Parenthood if it would not stop using that funding to perform or support abortion, and a policy that expanded the “Mexico City Policy.”
The Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance Policy ensures not only that U.S. taxpayer money is not funneled to foreign non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that perform or promote abortion as a method of family planning but is also applied to the “$8.8 billion in annual global health assistance funding appropriated to the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Departments of State and Defense” (to quote pro-life Rep. Chris Smith).
In addition, as NPR reported, Secretary Azar’s comments follow by less than two months a letter from Azar and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo
expressing similar concerns and asking foreign leaders to “join the United States in ensuring that every sovereign state has the ability to determine the best way to protect the unborn and defend the family as the foundational unit of society vital to children thriving and leading healthy lives.”