BREAKING: After Pro-Choice Pushback, Biden Reverses His Position on Abortion Amendment (Updated)
At an Atlanta fundraiser for his 2020 presidential campaign, former Vice President Joe Biden publicly reversed his position on the Hyde Amendment, now saying he could no longer support its ban on federal funding of abortions.
“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 healthcare is a right, as I do, I can no longer support an amendment that makes that right dependent on someone’s zip code.”
Just the day before, however, Biden’s campaign told CNN’s Dana Bash reported that he was resolutely in favor of keeping the Hyde Amendment in place. Talking with the campaign, she reported, repeating the campaign’s paraphrase of Biden’s position: “I’m explicitly told that this Joe Biden himself who says this is my conviction and I’m not going to change it. This is how I have felt and this is how I have voted.”
CNN political analyst Kirsten Powers, who has described herself as both “pro choice and pro life,” weighed in on the remarkable turnaround. “It was just yesterday that he was basically, his campaign was saying that he wasn’t going to reverse his position. He obviously knows what the Hyde Amendment is. It’s not like this is suddenly news to him. And so this is a clear cave to the pressure that he was getting, because it’s not like he got new information.”
Biden had drawn heavy criticism from many within the Democratic Party when his campaign reiterated that he supported the controversial amendment that has been in place in various versions since 1976. The amendment has been altered since its original passage several times, to make exceptions for the life of the mother, as well as cases of rape and incest.
Notably, 2020 opponent Elizabeth Warren gave a succinct, yet powerful rebuttal to Biden’s previous position in her MSNBC town hall just the day before.
Watch video above, via CNN.
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