Earlier this month, the House Appropriations Committee passed a spending bill that does not include key Pro-Life protections that have been part of previous federal budgets. The Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies passed an appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2022 that did not include the life-saving Hyde Amendment as well as other Pro-Life protections that have held bipartisan support for decades.
In every budget since 1976, the Hyde Amendment prevented tax dollars from paying for most elective abortions under federal Medicaid. The Pro-Life measure is credited with saving 2.4 million lives, and in Texas there have been an estimated 285,000 babies born who might otherwise have been aborted.
Additionally, Pro-Life measures like the Weldon Act provide conscience protections for Pro-Life health care professionals and ensure that organizations will not be forced to commit abortions. Under the Pro-Life Trump administration, the Department of Health and Human Services strengthened conscience protections. With the passage of the current appropriations bill, many of those protections are in jeopardy.
According to the Catholic News Agency, an attempt to add the Hyde Amendment during the committee hearing was voted down 27-32. Ultimately, the appropriations bill passed out of the committee with a vote of 33-25.
Several Pro-Life legislators expressed their dismay at the radical developments. Until recently, President Biden maintained strong support for the Hyde Amendment. For decades, he supported the measure as a way of ensuring that Pro-Lifers are not forced to pay for abortions. In the leadup to the 2020 presidential election, Biden bowed down to the abortion lobby and rescinded his commonsense support for the Hyde Amendment. With the endorsement of Planned Parenthood, America’s largest abortion business, Biden opted for the abortion industry’s money over any lingering principle or concern for Pro-Life Americans and preborn babies.
Following the vote on the appropriations bill, Representative Tom Cole (R-Oklahoma) noted that removing the Hyde Amendment “threatens to destabilize the entire appropriations process, because this bill will never become law if this language is not included.”
Cole issued a statement in which he argued, “Regardless of one’s personal views, lawmakers and presidents of both parties have always agreed that Americans should not be forced to pay for abortions with their tax dollars.” The statement continued, “Despite decades of strong bipartisan support for the Hyde Amendment, Democrats are abandoning key protections that have saved millions of precious lives and upheld the conscience rights of all Americans. Not only is this action wrong, but it contradicts the beliefs of the majority of Americans.”
At this juncture, the appropriations bill is unlikely to pass in the House without the Hyde Amendment. According to pundits, the radical move by anti-Life Democrats lacks widespread support and is unlikely to succeed either in the House or the Senate. Biden has previously pledged that his proposed $6 trillion budget will not include the Pro-Life Hyde Amendment, a radical decision that is out of step with average Americans.
Texas Right to Life has spearheaded efforts at the state level to ensure Pro-Life protections in the budget. Texans value Life and do not want their tax dollars to fund the killing of the innocent. Sign the petition today to call on Congress to ensure the same with the federal budget.
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