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Posts tagged ‘Rachel Levine’

Biden To Direct HHS To Expand Access to Sex Change Treatments, Particularly for Children


ERPORTED BY DYLAN HOUSMAN, HEALTHCARE REPORTER | June 15, 2022

Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/06/15/joe-biden-transgender-children-gender-affirming-care-sex-change/

Biden To Direct HHS To Expand Access To Sex Change Treatments 'Particularly For Children'
(Photo by Hannah Beier/Getty Images)

President Joe Biden will direct the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to expand access to “gender-affirming” care at a Pride month event Wednesday, the White House said. Biden will issue an executive order telling HHS to strengthen efforts to ban conversion therapy and increase access to sex change treatment for transgender Americans, including for children. The order will also target legislation passed in some Republican-led states to limit the promotion of LGBT material to children, such as Florida’s parental rights law.

Breaking: President Biden has signed an executive order blocking federal funding for conversion therapy. https://t.co/iXbzR6vhO0

— Mathew Shurka (@MathewShurka) June 15, 2022

The executive order explicitly endorses “gender-affirming” care, a euphemism for treatments, oftentimes irreversible, that facilitate a sex change, such as hormone therapy or sex-change surgeries. The Biden administration has staunchly supported providing those treatments to children.

“The President’s Order charges HHS to work with states to promote expanded access to gender-affirming care,” the White House said in a fact sheet. “The Department of Justice has intervened and filed statements of interest in lawsuits across the country challenging state laws that seek to ban transgender children from accessing gender-affirming health care and participating in school activities as unconstitutional.”

Biden will sign the order surrounded by LGBT children from Texas and Florida, two states which

have cracked down on the sexualization of kids this year, according to Politico. Florida’s parental rights law limits the promotion of sexualized content to children in schools, and Texas now has a policy that allows officials to investigate parents who aid their children in sexual transitions as minors for potential child abuse. (RELATED: How Influencers Lure Kids Into Transgender Lifestyle, Coach Them To Lie To Doctors)

Assistant Secretary for Health Rachel Levine, the first openly-transgender American to serve in a Senate-confirmed position, reportedly endorsed the order in a statement: “Today’s executive order continues the Biden Administration’s work against prejudice and makes it easier for people living in this country to live their lives openly and freely without fear of harassment, scorn or attack.”

In Its First Year, Biden’s HHS Relentlessly Attacked Christians and Unborn Babies


BY: RACHEL N. MORRISON | MARCH 18, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/03/18/in-its-first-year-bidens-hhs-relentlessly-attacked-christians-and-unborn-babies/

becerra

March 18 marks one year since pro-abortion radical Xavier Becerra was confirmed as President Joe Biden’s appointee for secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Although both men claim to be faithful Catholics, they have launched unprecedented attacks on people of faith by eliminating vital conscience and religious freedom protections and funneling millions of taxpayer dollars to the abortion industry.

At the HHS Accountability Project at the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C., we have been keeping tabs on HHS personnel and policy. The oft-heard maxim “personnel is policy” is no exception for HHS, the largest federal agency by budget. While Becerra was AWOL on the Covid fight, he was outright zealous on culture war issues, leading HHS’s singular focus on pushing pro-abortion and anti-religion policies on the American people.

Here are the top 10 lowlights for year one.

1. Dismantling HHS’s Conscience and Religious Freedom Division

One of Becerra’s early acts as secretary was to strip the Conscience and Religious Freedom Division within the HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR) of its independent ability to investigate violations of conscience and religious freedom laws. The division was created during the Trump administration to guarantee enforcement rather than neglect of laws that protect these fundamental and inalienable rights.

Becerra’s first budget proposal would have effectively eliminated this division as a standalone entity, despite Becerra having promised Congress that “the work [of the Conscience and Religious Freedom Division] will not change.” He, along with OCR political staff (such as political ideologue Laura Durso), refused to even consult with the dedicated career professionals of the division while they methodically removed conscience and religious freedom protections from the American people.

These developments were foreshadowed by transgender activist Dr. Rachel Levine who, prior to being elevated to the number-three position at HHS, proclaimed the division should be “either disbanded or certainly redirected.” 

2. Removing OCR’s First Amendment Enforcement Power

Becerra removed OCR’s authority to enforce conscience and religious projections under the bipartisan Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) and the First Amendment. A leaked memo revealed this move came at the request of Lisa Pino, the Biden-appointed director of OCR. She is tasked with enforcing civil rights protections in health and human services, not finding ways to remove them.

Remember, it was HHS under Obama that went after the Little Sisters of the Poor and lost under RFRA. Now Becerra has removed the only internal entity that would hold HHS accountable to the law.

3. Pushing a Ridiculously ‘Woke’ Budget

The Biden-Becerra HHS budget for fiscal year 2022 removed references to “conscience,” “religion,” and “Conscience and Religious Freedom Division.” But don’t worry, the new budget replaces references to these constitutional and statutory rights HHS is responsible for enforcing with a bunch of woke terms like “equity” — the Biden administration’s preferred priority.

4. Backing Forcing Nuns to Pay for Abortion

While Becerra was attorney general of California before becoming HHS secretary, OCR issued two notices of violation against Becerra and his state for violating federal conscience protections by forcing nuns (and others) to provide insurance coverage of abortion. Apart from the clear conflict of interest with Becerra leading the very office that previously found him in violation of the law, OCR under Becerra “reassessed” the conscience violations, magically finding there were none.

5. Abandoning Nurse Illegally Forced to Participate in Abortion

In 2019, OCR found a hospital had violated a nurse’s conscience rights by forcing her to participate in an abortion over her known conscience objection. When the hospital refused to change its policies to comply with the law, the federal government sued the hospital in federal court.

But on Becerra’s watch and despite his many promises to continue enforcing federal conscience laws, the Biden administration quietly dismissed the case without any settlement, agreement, or compensation for the nurse. Because federal conscience protection laws do not provide a private right of action, she cannot sue on her own and the violating hospital has been let off with impunity.

6. Relentlessly Pushing Abortion With Federal Resources

In response to Texas’ law protecting unborn children with beating hearts from abortion, the Biden-Becerra HHS announced, despite prohibitions on federal funds going to abortion, ways the department could “bolster access to safe and legal abortions in Texas.” HHS is awarding $10 million in additional funding to increase access to abortifacients for those affected by the Texas law.

OCR issued pro-abortion guidance explaining how a federal conscience protection law can protect abortion providers and patients seeking abortions. If HHS’s actions weren’t clear enough, Becerra stated, “We are telling doctors and others involved in the provision of abortion care, that we have your back.” Becerra and OCR clearly don’t want to enforce the law for those who do not want to participate in abortion.

7. Directly Funding Big Abortion

Becerra, who has oddly and repeatedly refused to acknowledge that partial-birth abortion is illegal, led HHS’s charge to fund Big Abortion. In 2021, Planned Parenthood received more than $5.4 million in taxpayer funds from HHS, an amount that is sure to increase over the next three years.

In an effort to further fund Planned Parenthood, the Biden-Becerra HHS ignored democratic norms to rush through new Title X regulations. Title X is a federal program that provides grants for a range of family planning services, but per the statute, such services cannot include abortion.

The new regulations, however, remove the requirement of physical and financial separation between Title X projects and abortion services, require abortion counseling and referrals, and remove conscience protections for Title X providers. Planned Parenthood had dropped out of the Title X program under those regulations, forfeiting that funding stream, but under the new regulations the abortion giant is expected to receive significant Title X funding.

8. Comingling Insurance Payments for Abortion

Last summer, HHS rushed through new insurance regulations that, contrary to the text of the Affordable Care Act, no longer require separate insurance payments for abortion services, allowing those payments to be comingled with payments for other covered services. Besides violating the law, combined payments create a lack of transparency and accountability. Consumers with conscience objections to abortion will no longer be on notice that their insurance plan covers abortion or that they are subsidizing abortions, including for any adult children on their plan.

9. Rescinding Faith-Based Waivers

Prompting a congressional inquiry, the Biden-Becerra HHS gratuitously rescinded waivers previously issued to faith-based adoption and foster care agencies in MichiganSouth Carolina, and Texas that allowed the agencies to qualify for HHS grants while operating in accordance with their deeply held religious beliefs. In the press release announcing the rescission, Becerra unironically stated: “At HHS, we treat any violation of civil rights or religious freedoms seriously.”

Please. This action comes on the heels of a unanimous ruling by the Supreme Court affirming the constitutional right of foster-care agencies to act according to their religious beliefs on human sexuality in certifying foster parents.  

10. Issuing Totalitarian Anti-Conscience Rules

HHS announced its new interpretation and enforcement of Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act that would force health-care professionals to perform gender transition surgeries and provide minors with harmful and sterilizing puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones. A new rule codifying this interpretation is anticipated in April and would likely not exempt providers with medical or conscience objections. HHS is also planning to rescind conscience regulations that protect health-care professionals from being forced to assist with abortions and protect others from having to pay for abortions.


Rachel N. Morrison is an attorney and fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, where she works on EPPC’s HHS Accountability Project.

Twitter suspends Republican congressman’s account for calling Rachel Levine a man


Reported By Michael Gryboski, Christian Post Reporter | Monday, October 25, 2021

Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/twitter-punishes-congressman-jim-banks-for-calling-rachel-levine-a-man.html/

Rachel Levine
Rachel Levine, a trans-identified nominee for Assistant Secretary in the Department of Health and Human Services, testifies at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee on February 25, 2021, on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Levine previously served as Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Health. | Caroline Brehman-Pool/Getty Images

Twitter has suspended the account of a Republican congressman who posted a tweet noting that President Joe Biden’s U.S. Assistant Secretary of Health, Rachel Levine, who identifies as transgender, is a man. Rep. Jim Banks, R-Ind., was suspended Saturday after posting a tweet in response to Levine — who went by the name Richard before he began identifying as female — becoming the first trans-identified four-star officer in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps.

Banks has been temporarily blocked from using his Twitter account until he agrees to delete the tweet calling Levine a man, according to NBC News. In the now-deleted tweet posted Tuesday, Banks lamented that “the title of first female four-star officer gets taken by a man.” Twitter claimed that the tweet violated its hateful conduct policy, which prohibits tweets that engage in “misgendering or deadnaming of transgender individuals.”

For his part, Banks took to his Instagram account to post a statement denouncing the actions of Twitter, saying that the social media site was censoring “a basic truth.”

“My tweet was a statement of fact. Big Tech doesn’t have to agree with me, but they shouldn’t be able to cancel me. If they silence me, they will silence you,” he warned.

“We can’t allow Big Tech to prevent us from telling the truth. When Republicans take back the House next year, we must restore honesty to our public forums and hold Big Tech accountable.” View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Jim Banks (@repjimbanks)

Levine was the previous secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Health and was confirmed by the U.S. Senate in March to be assistant secretary for the Department of Health and Human Services in a 52-48 vote.

In a tweet still visible as of Monday morning, Banks criticized the hailing of Levine as the first “female” four-star officer at the corps, arguing that it disrespected biological females.

“Calling someone that was born and lived as a man for 54 years the first ‘female’ four-star officer is an insult to every little girl who dreams of breaking glass ceilings one day,” tweeted Banks on Oct. 19.

While speaking during the swearing-in ceremony, Levine expressed optimism that there would be more efforts at diversifying the ranks of the corps.

“May this appointment today be the first of many more to come,” stated Levine. “Diversity makes us stronger.”

Banks is not the first person to face repercussions from Twitter for asserting that Levine is a biological male. On Jan. 20, the day of Biden’s inauguration, radio host Michael Brown sent out a tweet asking, “Will I get punished by Twitter for saying that, in God’s sight, ‘Rachel’ Levine (nominated by Biden to be his assistant secretary for HHS) is a man?” Shortly after that, Brown was locked out of his account for 12 hours.

A recent report from a media watchdog reveals that censorship of conservative politicians is not an uncommon phenomenon. The Media Research Center found that censorship of Republican members of Congress outnumbers censorship of Democrats in Congress by a ratio of 54 to 1. Follow Michael Gryboski on Twitter or Facebook

How The Rachel Levine ‘Four-Star Admiral’ Photo-Op Will Damage U.S. Security


Reported John Lucas | OCTOBER 25, 2021

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2021/10/25/how-the-rachel-levine-four-star-admiral-photo-op-will-damage-u-s-security/

To great public fanfare, Joe Biden has anointed Rachel Levine a “four-star admiral” in the Public Health Service (PHS). The public relations campaign in support of Levine has emphasized his status as the first transgender four-star “admiral” in the “eight U.S. uniformed services.” That PR campaign is misleading, and it is part of a dangerous effort to undermine the military. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) kicked off the propaganda campaign, leading with the “four-star transgender” meme: On October 19, it announced “the nation’s first openly transgender four-star officer across any of the eight uniformed services of the United States. (emphasis here and below is added). HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra reinforced the theme: “Admiral Levine’s historic appointment as the first openly transgender four-star officer is a giant step forward towards equality as a nation.” The U.S. surgeon general touted Levine as “first openly transgender four-star officer to serve in any of the uniformed services.”

The media parroted the party line. Here is The New York Times: “She [sic] is also the first openly transgender person to become a four-star officer in any of the nation’s eight uniformed services.” USA Today’s contribution was virtually indistinguishable: “Rachel Levine becomes first openly transgender 4-star officer across uniformed services.” Here’s The Washington Post: “Rachael Levine, openly transgendered health official sworn in as four-star admiral in Public Health Service.”

This roll-out and publicity barrage leave little doubt that Levine’s primary qualification for his instant promotion is his transgender status. What’s worse, it will damage U.S. military recruitment and morale, thus damaging U.S. national security.

Yes, the Public Health Service is one of the eight “uniformed services” but, notwithstanding the uniforms and its bureaucrats designated as “admirals,” it is not part of the “armed forces.” The U.S. armed forces are the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Coast Guard, and Space Force. The other two government departments in the category of “uniformed services” are the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Commissioned Officer Corps and the Public Health Services Commissioned Officer Corps. In addition to their Navy-like uniforms, these two also are headed by bureaucrats designated “admirals.”

Four-star is the highest rank in the U.S. military. Although nine five-star admirals and generals served in World War II, the five-star rank was retired upon the death of Gen. Omar Bradley in 1981, leaving four-star generals as the highest rank. The four-star designation calls to mind such historical and accomplished military men as Admiral William Halsey Jr., who commanded the Pacific Fleet in the fight-to-the-death against Japan (and was promoted to five-star rank only after the end of the war), and such notables as Gen. George Patton, recipient of two distinguished service crosses for heroism in battle and the American commander most feared by the Germans in World War II.

Even Patton was a “mere” three-star general when he commanded the Third Army in its drive through Europe into the heart of Germany, and was only awarded his fourth star less than a month before the war’s end. Thus, while maneuvering his Third Army to relieve Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge, Patton would have been outranked by now-Admiral Levine.

In short, promotion to the four-star level normally indicates decades of military service, often in dangerous and life-threatening circumstances, and military achievements of the highest order. Levine does not remotely merit any comparison with these or any of the other accomplished four-star officers, whether admirals or generals.

The administration’s publicity campaign seeking to present Levine as an accomplished four-star admiral is a fraud, particularly coupled with the references to all the uniformed services, as if they are somehow comparable. Although now designated as an “admiral,” Levine commands no sailors, no submarines, and no ships. At least the admiral managing the NOAA has ships and aircraft to command.

Unlike Navy admirals, Levin did not become an admiral after decades of service, including overseas deployments, time away from family, and the hazards that accompany military service. Nor did he attend Annapolis or any other service academy, or even Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) or officer candidate school. He was never an ensign, lieutenant, commander, captain, or even a vice admiral.

Others have documented Levine’s failures in the public health arena. In view of that record, no one can even claim that he is the best person to head PHS out of the hundreds of thousands of physicians in the United States. That is why the PR campaign emphasized his purported gender status. There is no doubt that he is most famous for claiming to be a woman, after 33 years of marriage and fathering two children with a real woman.

Americans should consider the cumulative effect that this and similar boneheaded decisions have on military retention and morale and whether they are done by design. Consider for a moment the perspective of, for example, an Army major or Navy lieutenant commander with 10 to 15 years of service. Or perhaps consider a Marine gunnery sergeant or Army master sergeant with the same amount of service.

Let us assume that he is in one of the special operations units, such as the Army Special Forces, Recon Marines or SEALS, since they are still engaged in combat. Such an officer or NCO has worked extremely hard to receive each promotion. He has been at war for his entire adult life and probably has between 6 and 10 combat deployments, which amount to years away from his family. He may have been wounded, perhaps multiple times. At the bare minimum, he and his family have had to cope with horrendous personal and family stress, among other issues. Now he sees a man with no military experience summarily appointed to six grades above him to the rank of four-star admiral—the equivalent of General Patton, for Pete’s sake—purely as a political sop.

Does anyone in this administration conceive of the damage to morale that this can cause? Do they care? This tells American servicemen and women that their sacrifices are not appreciated, their service is not valued, and that they will not be treated with equal fairness.

Are we going to see a rash of resignations in reaction to this one incident? No. But it most assuredly is another blow at the foundation of the military, another effort to use it as a lab for social experimentation and to force political conformity upon those who remain.

This is part of the effort to purge the military of non-leftists and to seed the ranks with “woke,” politically conscious officers and NCOs who will hew to the “progressive” party line. It is part of the pattern that includes Biden’s purge of Trump appointees from the service academies’ boards, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s search for alleged “domestic terrorists” in the ranks, and Gen.  Mark Milley’s focus on the “white rage” supposedly permeating the services. It is part of leftist ideology’s ever-growing danger to the U.S. military and therefore to the country.

John Lucas is a practicing attorney in Tennessee who has successfully argued before the U. S. Supreme Court. Before entering law school at the University of Texas, he served in the Army Special Forces as an enlisted man and then graduated from the U. S. Military Academy at West Point in 1969. He is an Army Ranger and fought in Vietnam as an infantry platoon leader. He is married with four children.

Pennsylvania: Judge Rules Wolf, Levine’s Shutdown Orders Unconstitutional BREITBART NEWS | 14 Sep 2020


Posted by BREITBART NEWS | 

URL of the originating web site: https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2020/09/14/pennsylvania-judge-rules-wolf-levines-shutdown-orders-unconstitutional/

Governor Tom Wolf listening aa Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine speaks to reporters. Governor Tom Wolf and Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine provided an update on the coronavirus known as COVID-19 and outline ongoing efforts to mitigate the virus in Pennsylvania. The Department of Health anticipates that there …

U.S. District Judge William Stickman IV sided with plaintiffs that included hair salons, drive-in movie theaters, a farmer’s market vendor, a horse trainer and several Republican officeholders who sued as individuals. Stickman, an appointee of President Donald Trump, wrote in his ruling that the Wolf administration’s pandemic policies have been overreaching, arbitrary and violated citizens’ constitutional rights.

The governor’s efforts to slow the spread of the coronavirus “were undertaken with the good intention of addressing a public health emergency,” Stickman wrote. “But even in an emergency, the authority of government is not unfettered.”

Courts had consistently rejected challenges to Wolf’s power to order businesses to close during the pandemic, and many other governors, Republican and Democrat, undertook similar measures as the virus spread across the country.

Wolf has lifted many of the restrictions since the lawsuit was filed in May, allowing businesses to reopen and canceling a statewide stay-at-home order. But his administration has maintained capacity restrictions and limitations on alcohol sales at bars and restaurants. The state has also imposed a gathering limit of more than 25 people for events held indoors and more than 250 people for those held outside.

A spokesperson for Wolf said the administration was reviewing the decision.

Pennsylvania has reported that more than 145,000 people statewide have contracted the virus since the beginning of the pandemic. More than 7,800 people have died.

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