Biden campaign confirms he supports Hyde Amendment

Former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenOVERNIGHT DEFENSE: Murkowski, Mattis criticism ratchets up pressure on GOP over Trump| Esper orders hundreds of active-duty troops outside DC sent home day after reversal | Iran releases US Navy veteran Michael White Davis: 72 hours cementing the real choice for November OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Trump signs order removing environmental reviews for major projects | New Trump air rule will limit future pollution regulations, critics say | DNC climate group calls for larger federal investment on climate than Biden plan MORE’s presidential campaign confirmed that he still supports a controversial ban prohibiting the use of federal funds for certain abortion services.

Campaign aides told The Hill that the 2020 presidential hopeful still supports the Hyde Amendment, which has prevented government health programs like Medicaid from paying for abortions except in cases of rape, incest or to save the life of the woman.

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Biden’s campaign did say that Biden would be open to repealing the amendment if abortion access currently protected under Roe v. Wade was threatened.

NBC News first reported Biden's stance on the measure. 

The support appears to differ from what Biden told an American Civil Liberties Union volunteer when asked about the Hyde Amendment last month.

“It can’t stay,” he said.

The Biden campaign told The Hill that Biden misheard the ACLU volunteer and thought she was referring to the Mexico City rule, which prevents federal aid money from going to organizations overseas that perform abortions.

Biden has never changed his support for Hyde Amendment, the campaign clarified.

He appears to be the only Democratic White House hopeful who has come out in support of the 43-year-old ban, NBC News noted.

Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenGeorge Floyd protests show corporations must support racial and economic equality It's time to shut down industrial animal farming The Hill's Morning Report - Protesters' defiance met with calls to listen MORE (D-Mass.) and former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas.) have released proposals to protect abortion access that call for an end to the Hyde Amendment.

Warren has also joined with the other Senate women running for the Democratic nomination — Sens. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisPaul clashes with Booker, Harris over anti-lynching bill Rand Paul holding up quick passage of anti-lynching bill Minority caucuses call for quick action on police reform MORE (Calif.), Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandSenate Dems press DOJ over coronavirus safety precautions in juvenile detention centers Senate Democrat introduces bill to protect food supply It's as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process MORE (N.Y.) and Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharHillicon Valley: Conspiracy theories run rampant online amid Floyd protests | First lawsuit filed against Trump social media order | Snapchat to no longer promote Trump's account Derek Chauvin charge upgraded to second-degree murder; other officers charged Democratic lawmakers push leadership to ensure college students have internet access MORE (Minn.) — to co-sponsor legislation overturning the ban.

Planned Parenthood slammed Biden’s continued support for the Hyde Amendment in a statement to NBC.

“The unfair Hyde Amendment makes it so that those who have the least end up having to pay the most to access abortion, and those who are service members or live on reservations are often left with no coverage for abortion care,” Kelly Robinson, Planned Parenthood Action Fund's executive director, said.

“We encourage any candidate who doesn't recognize Hyde's impact to speak to the women it hurts most — particularly on women of color and women with low incomes — to learn more about the harmful impacts of this discriminatory policy," Robinson said.

Biden told supporters in New Hampshire as recently as Tuesday that he supports the 1973 Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion nationwide.

He vowed to “push” for legislation keeping the procedure legal should the high court overturn the decision while he was president.

Jamal Brown, Biden’s national press secretary, told The Hill that Biden firmly believes that Roe v. Wade is “the law of the land.”

“Throughout his career, Joe Biden has fought vigorously to protect a woman's right to choose and against measures criminalizing abortion,” Brown said in a statement. “As Chairman of the Judiciary Committee, he blocked the Supreme Court nomination of Judge Robert Bork and he opposed anti-choice justices Roberts, Alito, and Thomas.”

“Vice President Biden believes we must protect the progress we've made and has called on codifying the decision in Roe to ensure this choice remains between a woman and her doctor,” Brown added.

Biden is a devout Roman Catholic who opposes abortion.

The former Delaware senator has spoken publicly about his internal debate over the issue, and his voting record while in Congress reflects his past opposition to most federal funding for abortion services, according to an NBC analysis.

Biden voted against a 1977 compromise that allowed Medicaid to fund abortions with exceptions for rape, incest or medical safety of the mother. He then voted again in 1981 to remove rape and incest exceptions when they passed.

The ex-lawmaker also voted several times to prohibit federal workers from using health insurance on abortion services, with the only exception being to save the life of the mother.

Updated 10:05 a.m.