Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) claimed that Americans who don’t want their tax dollars funding abortions do not have a “valid argument.”
The abortion debate was catapulted into the public discourse following an Alabama law that set forward the most restrictive abortion regulations in the United States. Since Alabama’s legislation, several other states have proposed “heartbeat laws” that would pass similar restrictions on abortion.
While these new laws have spiraled the abortion debate into extremes, Gillibrand was asked to comment on a Medicaid policy — the Hyde amendment — that prevented the use of tax dollars to fund abortion, therefore easing the minds of pro-life Americans without restricting the practice of abortion.
Although this amendment didn’t restrict abortion access in the U.S., Gillibrand claimed pro-life Americans who don’t want their tax dollars funding abortion don’t have a “valid argument.” Instead, she noted that she wants to work to repeal the Hyde amendment.
Watch Gillibrand’s response below:
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“We have a tenant in our Constitution, it’s called separation of church and state. And I do not believe that that is a valid argument. I think that the Hyde amendment should be repealed and that we actually need to make sure that women — regardless of their income level — have a basic right to reproductive care. It’s about our humanity, and it’s about our basic civil rights.”
Gillibrand — who is one of 23 Democrats running for president — vowed to work to repeal the Hyde amendment as president, therefore forcing Americans to fund abortions with their tax dollars.
The New York senator isn’t the only Democrat to oppose any limitations on abortion. Both Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg have explained that they do not believe the government has any role to play in restricting abortion — even abortions based on gender.
Although Gillibrand may be painting the picture of what her abortion policy could look like if she wins a seat in the Oval Office, she has a long way to go before she gets there. She is one of the only Democrats who hasn’t received enough support to qualify for the Democratic National Committee primary debates.