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Rounds, Wicker and Armed Services Republicans Challenge Pentagon Abortion Rule

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) and Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Ranking Member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, sent a letter blasting the Department of Defense’s recent decision to permit taxpayer funding for and authorization of travel to acquire abortion-related services.

The senators wrote Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin criticizing the department for failing to perform a timely notification to congressional leaders regarding this change in policy, while also neglecting to return multiple requests for data to support the Pentagon’s specious claim that failing to provide abortion-related assistance would decrease the readiness of the force.

“With no apparent regard for the facts in this important matter, you directed the department to develop significant policy changes related to the prevention and termination of a pregnancy,” the senators wrote to Austin. “This can only be interpreted as a purely political action taken without consulting Congress.”

Senators Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.), Ted Budd (R-N.C.), Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.) and Eric Schmitt (R-Mo.) joined Rounds and Wicker in sending the letter.

The senators’ challenge follows up on a July 2022 letter sent by Rounds, Wicker and their Armed Services Colleagues that requests the same information.

The full letter can be found HERE.