President Biden released a proposed $6 trillion budget Friday for the upcoming fiscal year that fails to include language prohibiting taxpayer-funding of abortion in a controversial move that fulfills a campaign promise.
The Biden 2022 budget includes no mention of the Hyde Amendment, a legislative provision dating to the 1970s that prohibits federal funds from being used for abortions. It originally passed a Democratic-controlled House and Senate just a few years after Roe v. Wade. President Obama signed budgets during every year of his administration that included Hyde language.
Biden previously supported the Hyde Amendment but flipped on the issue in 2019 while running for president.
Despite Biden’s position, any budget without the Hyde Amendment faces an uphill climb in the 50-50 Senate.
The amendment must be reauthorized annually. The most recent budget, by President Trump, did include Hyde language.
Pro-choice groups on Friday applauded the Biden budget for excluding the Hyde Amendment.
“Today’s budget marks a historic step toward finally ending the coverage bans that have pushed abortion care out of reach and perpetuated inequality for decades,” said Georgeanne Usova, senior legislative counsel at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). “... With abortion access under unprecedented attack around the country, lifting discriminatory barriers to care is a matter of racial and economic justice that cannot wait. No one should be denied abortion care because of where they live, how much money they have, or how they get insurance.”
The pro-choice group All Above All tweeted that Biden “kept his campaign promise” and “released a budget without the Hyde Amendment.”
🎉BREAKING🥳 President Biden kept his campaign promise and just released a budget without the Hyde Amendment. YOU DID THAT! Our 130+ orgs coalition DID THAT. We love to see #AbortionJustice in action. #BeBoldEndHyde pic.twitter.com/IaffE0u9jI— All* Above All (@AllAboveAll) May 28, 2021
But National Right to Life said the move “cements his standing as an absolutist pro-abortion president.”
“By eliminating the Hyde Amendment from his proposed budget, President Biden has once again shown his allegiance to the extremism of pro-abortion groups and their allies,” said Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life. “This budget proposal is a scorched earth campaign by pro-abortion Democrats who are marching hand in hand with the most extreme demands of the abortion industry to eliminate all limitations on abortion as well as require taxpayer funding of abortion.”
Lila Rose of the pro-life group Live Action tweeted, “The Biden administration has proposed a budget today that forces taxpayers to directly fund abortions. Abortion is the leading cause of death in America. This is a horrific injustice.”
BREAKING: The Biden administration has proposed a budget today that forces taxpayers to directly fund abortions.— Lila Rose (@LilaGraceRose) May 28, 2021
Abortion is the leading cause of death in America.
This is a horrific injustice.
A coalition of 200 House Republicans signed a letter in January to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other Congressional leaders declaring they won’t support any budget bill that allows for taxpayer funding of abortion.
“The Hyde Amendment alone has saved the lives of over 2 million innocent babies and continues to protect the conscience rights of a vast majority of Americans opposed to publicly funded abortions,” the letter said.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Joe Raedle/Staff
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.