The Global Gag Rule prohibits foreign nongovernmental organizations from using their private, non-U.S. funds to provide comprehensive, safe abortion services, information or referrals for abortions, or to advocate for the legalization or liberalization of safe abortion services if they want to continue receiving U.S. assistance. In addition to reproductive health and family planning, the expanded Global Gag Rule under President Trump now applies to all U.S. global health assistance, impacting maternal and child health, nutrition, HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis, infectious diseases, neglected tropical diseases as well as water sanitation and hygiene programming. Previously known as the Mexico City Policy, the legal name of the policy is now “Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance.”
While the Global Gag Rule has existed since 1984 and has served as a political football between Republican and Democratic presidential administrations, there have been no comprehensive, bipartisan polling efforts to measure public opinion on the policy. The Center for Health and Gender Equity (CHANGE) and PAI engaged public opinion research firms Lake Research Partners and American Viewpoint to conduct a joint nationwide survey among voters to determine the favorability of banning U.S. global health assistance to health care organizations in other countries that provide abortions or referrals to women even if they use their own funding. The survey also measured opinions on the U.S.’s role in providing foreign assistance to other countries for medical care.