Former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenHillicon Valley: Biden calls on Facebook to change political speech rules | Dems demand hearings after Georgia election chaos | Microsoft stops selling facial recognition tech to police Trump finalizing executive order calling on police to use ‘force with compassion’ The Hill’s Campaign Report: Biden campaign goes on offensive against Facebook MORE’s presidential campaign confirmed that he still supports a controversial ban prohibiting the use of federal funds for certain abortion services.
Campaign aides told The Hill that the 2020 presidential hopeful still supports the Hyde Amendment, which has prevented government health programs like Medicaid from paying for abortions except in cases of rape, incest or to save the life of the woman.
Biden’s campaign did say that Biden would be open to repealing the amendment if abortion access currently protected under Roe v. Wade was threatened.
NBC News first reported Biden’s stance on the measure.
The support appears to differ from what Biden told an American Civil Liberties Union volunteer when asked about the Hyde Amendment last month.
“It can’t stay,” he said.
The Biden campaign told The Hill that Biden misheard the ACLU volunteer and thought she was referring to the Mexico City rule, which prevents federal aid money from going to organizations overseas that perform abortions.
Biden has never changed his support for Hyde Amendment, the campaign clarified.
He appears to be the only Democratic White House hopeful who has come out in support of the 43-year-old ban, NBC News noted.
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Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenWarren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases OVERNIGHT DEFENSE: Joint Chiefs chairman says he regrets participating in Trump photo-op | GOP senators back Joint Chiefs chairman who voiced regret over Trump photo-op | Senate panel approves 0B defense policy bill Trump on collision course with Congress over bases with Confederate names MORE (D-Mass.) and former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas.) have released proposals to protect abortion access that call for an end to the Hyde Amendment.
Warren has also joined with the other Senate women running for the Democratic nomination — Sens. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisRand Paul introduces bill to end no-knock warrants The Hill’s Campaign Report: Biden campaign goes on offensive against Facebook McEnany says Juneteenth is a very ‘meaningful’ day to Trump MORE (Calif.), Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandWarren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases Warren, Pressley introduce bill to make it a crime for police officers to deny medical care to people in custody Senate Dems press DOJ over coronavirus safety precautions in juvenile detention centers MORE (N.Y.) and Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharHillicon Valley: Biden calls on Facebook to change political speech rules | Dems demand hearings after Georgia election chaos | Microsoft stops selling facial recognition tech to police Democrats demand Republican leaders examine election challenges after Georgia voting chaos Harris grapples with defund the police movement amid veep talk MORE (Minn.) — to co-sponsor legislation overturning the ban.
Planned Parenthood slammed Biden’s continued support for the Hyde Amendment in a statement to NBC.
“The unfair Hyde Amendment makes it so that those who have the least end up having to pay the most to access abortion, and those who are service members or live on reservations are often left with no coverage for abortion care,” Kelly Robinson, Planned Parenthood Action Fund’s executive director, said.
“We encourage any candidate who doesn’t recognize Hyde’s impact to speak to the women it hurts most — particularly on women of color and women with low incomes — to learn more about the harmful impacts of this discriminatory policy,” Robinson said.
Biden told supporters in New Hampshire as recently as Tuesday that he supports the 1973 Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion nationwide.
He vowed to “push” for legislation keeping the procedure legal should the high court overturn the decision while he was president.
Jamal Brown, Biden’s national press secretary, told The Hill that Biden firmly believes that Roe v. Wade is “the law of the land.”
“Throughout his career, Joe Biden has fought vigorously to protect a woman’s right to choose and against measures criminalizing abortion,” Brown said in a statement. “As Chairman of the Judiciary Committee, he blocked the Supreme Court nomination of Judge Robert Bork and he opposed anti-choice justices Roberts, Alito, and Thomas.”
“Vice President Biden believes we must protect the progress we’ve made and has called on codifying the decision in Roe to ensure this choice remains between a woman and her doctor,” Brown added.
Biden is a devout Roman Catholic who opposes abortion.
The former Delaware senator has spoken publicly about his internal debate over the issue, and his voting record while in Congress reflects his past opposition to most federal funding for abortion services, according to an NBC analysis.
Biden voted against a 1977 compromise that allowed Medicaid to fund abortions with exceptions for rape, incest or medical safety of the mother. He then voted again in 1981 to remove rape and incest exceptions when they passed.
The ex-lawmaker also voted several times to prohibit federal workers from using health insurance on abortion services, with the only exception being to save the life of the mother.
Updated 10:05 a.m.