After years of speaking out against federal funding for abortion, Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden is now saying he supports a repeal of the Hyde amendment.
A recent Twitter video posted by the ACLU showed Biden being confronted by an activist on whether he supports repealing the amendment, which currently blocks federal insurance coverage on abortions.
Biden replied, “It can’t stay,” revealing his support of a repeal.
Our volunteer Nina asked Joe Biden whether, as president, he would lift the Hyde amendment, which bans federal insurance coverage of abortion.
— ACLU (@ACLU) May 8, 2019
However, this opinion was not always the case. During an interview in 2007, the former vice president claimed that abortion was not a right and did not support repealing the amendment.
“It goes to the question of whether or not you’re going to impose a view to support something that is not a guaranteed right but an affirmative action to promote,” said Biden.
Watch his comments below:
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) May 21, 2019
In a statement provided to the National Review, executive director of Democrats for Life Kristen Day spoke out against Biden’s new stance on the issue, claiming that it would alienate some Democratic voters.
“Vice President Biden could have filled that void with a more moderate position. Instead, he is catering to the vocal minority who is pushing an abortion extremist agenda that will not resonate with general election voters,” Day said.
The 2007 interview is not the only time Biden had claimed he was against federal abortion funding, having written to constituents in 1994 that he was strongly opposed to the appeal.
“I will continue to abide by the same principle that has guided me throughout my 21 years in the Senate: those of us who are opposed to abortion should not be compelled to pay for them,” Biden wrote. “As you may know, I have consistently — on no fewer than 50 occasions — voted against federal funding of abortions.”
In his book “Promises to Keep,” Biden also called himself moderate on the issue of abortion, a reputation he seems to be trying to lose during the 2020 campaign.
“I’ve stuck to my middle-of-the-road position on abortion for more than 30 years,” Biden wrote in 2007. “I still vote against partial birth abortion and federal funding.”
Biden’s change in opinion may be a sign that he is trying to imitate the extreme views of many other Democratic presidential candidates in the crowded 2020 field.