Election 2016: A Dismal Outcome for Family Planning

We held off on finalizing this issue of Population Connection magazine until the absolute last minute so that we’d be able to include the results of the 2016 election.

Those results are … not encouraging.

Republican nominee Donald Trump is now President-elect of the United States. Anti-choice crusader Mike Pence is Vice President-elect. Final numbers on House and Senate were not available by the print deadline for this issue, but although we believe we have made gains in both chambers, it is clear that anti-family planning forces will continue to control Congress.

We can expect to see a near-immediate reinstatement of the Global Gag Rule, as well as an end to United States contributions to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). We’ll have to wait to see what President Trump’s proposed federal budget looks like, but no one should be optimistic about his foreign aid plans.

The Affordable Care Act—and its contraceptive coverage guarantees—are in real jeopardy. And the new President-elect has explicitly promised to appoint Supreme Court justices who will overturn Roe v. Wade. We know he’ll get to appoint at least one.

Make no mistake, we’re not giving up. But the fight we now face is not one to advance a progressive agenda for women and families around the world; it’s to protect our hard-won gains against an intentional and determined assault by an explicitly hostile Congress and White House.

The battle begins now.

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