Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday criticized the Bush administration's policies on abstinence and reproductive health, saying the White House puts too much emphasis on abstinence as a strategy to prevent HIV and on restricting women's access to reproductive health services in developing nations. Although the Bush administration officially supports the "ABC" HIV prevention model--abstinence, be faithful, use condoms--Clinton says far too much emphasis is placed on abstinence rather than on condom use. "ABC is a good strategy, but it has three parts to it, and we need to remind the Administration of that," Clinton said at an awards dinner for the International Women's Health Coalition in New York City. "There are so many strategies that we know work, and we are not yet fully committed in our government to implementing those strategies."
Clinton also criticized the Bush administration for its ongoing policy of preventing federal funds from going to international organizations that provide abortion services--even those that simply offer information about abortion but do not provide it, or those that offer abortion services with their own funds. In July, Bush withheld $34 million in funding for the United Nations Population Fund for the third consecutive year because the Administration believes its work in China indirectly supports abortion in the world's most populous nation. Clinton said more than 20 million women each year undergo unsafe abortions and that more than 68,000 die. "I hope we will do more to try to protect against these ill-thought-out policies by this administration," Clinton said.