Family Research Council: The Extreme Anti-Choice Group Molding Trump’s Reproductive Rights Policy

By: Laura Huss & Kat Jercich, Rewire, May 10, 2019

Since its establishment in the 1980s, the Family Research Council (FRC) has actively worked to build support for its conservative and extreme positions. The Trump administration has welcomed it with open arms—and the results have been disastrous for reproductive rights.

FRC has been designated a “hate group” by the Southern Poverty Law Center, in large part because it routinely demonizes the LGBTQ community. The organization opposes marriage equality as well as laws addressing hate crimes, and many of its supporters on social media have embracedwhite nationalism and neo-Nazism. But FRC is also committed to undermining reproductive rights, promoting a deeply anti-choice agenda long before Trump got to the White House.

For example, FRC President Tony Perkins was a member of Trump’s anti-choice advisory council during the 2016 presidential race. Since Trump’s election, numerous people affiliated with the group have been installed into powerful positions within the executive branch to help mold his health policy agenda.

Alice Huling, counsel for the nonprofit watchdog organization Campaign for Accountability (CfA), has researched FRC’s connections to the Trump administration. “Now that they’ve sort of infiltrated this administration, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in particular, they appear to be using their power there … to really push that particular ideological viewpoint,” she told Rewire.News.

“Specifically within HHS, what they’re pushing in their agenda is not really about providing health care,” she continued. “It’s about limiting women’s access to health care.”

“Tony Perkins seems to have the ear of President Trump, and certainly Vice President Pence and even Secretary of State [Mike] Pompeo,” said Huling. “That’s also a sort of direct channel … to really be influencing their views on things and … feeding a particular religious point of view.”

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