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State Department

The U.S. Department of State (also known as the State Department, or State) is the American agency charged with leading U.S. foreign policy through “diplomacy, advocacy, and assistance.” The Trump administration has slashed money to the State Department year after year. Trump also unsuccessfully tried to defund the State Department’s Office of Global Women’s issues, which was subsequently gutted and left leaderless for years.  

Indeed, reproductive rights have not fared well at the State Department under Trump. Each year, the State Department’s annual human rights report has cut analysis on women’s rights and discriminations, such as passages on access to contraceptives and abortion. Trump’s first Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, approved Trump’s 2017 decision to reinstate a more extreme version of the Global Gag Rule, which denies U.S. funding to any organization that promotes or provides abortion and has been proven to have catastrophic effects on reproductive health globally. The current Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, has expanded the Global Gag Rule, as well as introduced multiple avenues at State — including the new Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom and Commission on Unalienable Rights — through which anti-LGBTQ, anti-reproductive rights officials can export their views globally under the guise of religious freedom.