White House proposes continued funding to Planned Parenthood if it stops offering abortions

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- The White House made an informal proposal to continue funding Planned Parenthood, but only if the clinic stops offering abortions.

According to a statement from President Donald Trump, he said he is pro-life and "deeply committed to investing in women's health." He said he plans to significantly increase federal funding to support non-abortion services, such as cancer screenings.

"There is an opportunity for organizations to continue the important work they do in support of women's health, while not providing abortion services," the statement said, in part.

In response to the proposal, Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards said the organization will not back down from performing abortions when necessary.

In a statement, Richards said no federal funding goes toward abortions.

"Defunding' Planned Parenthood would block millions of people in this country from accessing birth control, cancer screenings, and preventive care. For many patients, Planned Parenthood is the only health care provider they see," the statement said, in part.

Richards went on to say the proposal is "the same demand opponents of women's health have been pushing for decades, as part of their long-standing effort to end women's access to safe, legal abortion."

Anti-abortion activists want the federal government to cut off all federal funding to Planned Parenthood. Nearly $400 million in Medicaid money goes to the group and pulling it back would result in roughly 400,000 women losing access to care, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

In one of his first acts as president, Trump banned U.S. funding to international groups that perform abortions or even provide information about abortions.

Vice President Mike Pence strongly opposes abortion, citing his Roman Catholic beliefs, and the newly confirmed health secretary, Tom Price, has supported cutting off taxpayer money to Planned Parenthood.

The Associated Press and ABC News contributed to this report.
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