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Biden flip-flops on abortion funding

Former Vice President Joe Biden at a fundraising gala in Atlanta, Ga., on Thursday Associated Press/Photo by John Bazemore

Biden flip-flops on abortion funding

After intense criticism from pro-abortion advocates, former Vice President Joe Biden said Thursday he no longer supports the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits federal dollars from directly funding abortion except in cases of rape, incest, and when the mother’s life is endangered.

Biden announced at a Democratic National Committee event in Atlanta on Thursday that he changed his position due to Republican lawmakers in some states passing “extreme laws in clear violation of constitutional rights.”

“I can’t justify leaving millions of women without access to the care they need and the ability to exercise their constitutionally protected right,” Biden said. “If I believe health care is a right, as I do, I can no longer support an amendment that makes that right dependent on someone’s ZIP code.”

In an exchange captured on video, Biden last month seemed to tell an American Civil Liberties Union volunteer that he would support repealing the Hyde Amendment. His campaign later clarified that Biden had “not at this point changed his position on the Hyde Amendment” but “misheard the woman” and “thought she was referring to the Mexico City rule, which prevents federal aid money from going to organizations overseas that perform abortions.”

Several of Biden’s rivals for the Democratic presidential nomination quickly reiterated their support for repealing the amendment, including Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Bernie Sanders of Vermont, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, and Kamala Harris of California, some of whom voted for the amendment when it was included in various appropriations bills to fund the government, Politico reported.

Pro-life advocates criticized Biden for caving to the abortion lobby.

“Joe Biden’s support for taxpayer funding of abortion after decades of opposition is just the latest example of Democratic extremism on abortion,” Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser said in a statement.

Not a single Democratic contender for 2020 has taken a pro-life position. Many of them have pledged to uphold even more extreme pro-abortion policies such as codifying Roe v. Wade into national law so the Supreme Court cannot reverse it.

Harvest Prude

Harvest is a former political reporter for WORLD’s Washington Bureau. She is a World Journalism Institute and Patrick Henry College graduate.



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Glad to see Biden switch his position. Makes him a less palatable choice for those “moderate Christians” looking for a way to justify voting for a Democrat. 

I am acquainted with a few of those. Some insist that abortion access is important because of the numerous pregnancies caused by rape and incest—“numerous” is a gross mischaracterization. Or they claim they “personally oppose abortion,” but can’t make that decision for someone else. (Doesn’t a civilized society make decisions all the time about individual’s “rights” to commit crimes?)  Or these moderates insist if abortion clinics are shut down, there won’t be any place to get “women's healthcare.”  

I’m sorry if you disagree, but there is really very little gray area with abortion. It’s quite black and white—abortion is the murder of a human. Only when necessary to save the life of the mother should abortion be permitted.