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Pro-choice activists and politicians associated with Planned Parenthood. Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

A panel of 3 federal appeals judges ruled on Thursday that a family planning "gag rule" could take effect immediately, withdrawing up to $60 million in federal funding from Planned Parenthood and similar reproductive-care providers, the Washington Post reports.

What they're saying: "If the program refers patients to abortion providers for family planning services, then that program is logically one 'where abortion is a method of family planning,'" the panel wrote.

Why it matters: Millions — particularly low-income women — depend on these federal grants for services like birth control, cancer screening and other health-related tests. Some argue that this is yet another blow to women's rights since President Trump took office, while others fear the decision could imperil the health of millions of American women.

Details: The Trump administration's new rule, published in March, would render taxpayer-funded clinics unqualified to accept funding if they perform abortions or provide referrals. Diane Foley, deputy assistant secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services spoke of "grave concerns" that taxpayer dollars were illegally paying for abortions, thus justifying the new rule, per the Post. Some elements of the law, such as banning abortion referrals, will be effective immediately.

  • Planned Parenthood has long been targeted by social conservatives who have tried to redirect funding toward religious organizations that educate women on abstinence.

What's next: Planned Parenthood along with 21 state attorneys general who filed suit after the policy was introduced could appeal Thursday's decision; however, it seems unlikely the ruling would be overturned.

Go deeper: Trump weighs cutting Planned Parenthood's Title X funds

Go deeper

Most teachers are white. Most students aren't.

Expand chart
Data: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics; Chart: Baidi Wang/Axios

The nation's 6.6 million teacher workforce has grown more racially and ethnically diverse over the past three decades — but not nearly fast enough to keep pace with a student population that's nearing majority-minority in public schools, two new reports show.

Why it matters: The disparities are especially acute between Hispanic students and teachers, and in schools with 90% or higher non-white student populations.

Updated 11 hours ago - World

UK government: Kremlin has plan "to install pro-Russian leadership" in Ukraine

British Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss. Photo: Gints Ivuskans / AFP via Getty Images

The United Kingdom's Foreign Secretary on Saturday night said the government has "information that indicates the Russian Government is looking to install a pro-Russian leader in Kyiv as it considers whether to invade and occupy Ukraine."

Driving the news: U.S. National Security Council spokeswoman Emily Horne called the intelligence "deeply concerning" in a statement to Axios. The Biden administration has said Russia is actively manufacturing a pretext for invasion and warned that Putin could use joint military exercises in Belarus as cover to invade from the north.

Updated 12 hours ago - Science

This powerful new accelerator looks for keys to the center of atoms

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Nuclear physicists trying to piece together how atoms are built are about to get a powerful new tool.

Why it matters: When the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams begins experiments later this spring, physicists from around the world will use the particle accelerator to better understand the inner workings of atoms that make up all the matter that can be seen in the universe.

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