Biden’s Plans Concerning Abortion

By Roya Statler

New York City, New York

Biden promises to make Roe v. Wade the “law of the land” (Photo Credit: Harper's Bazaar)

40% of voters felt that abortion was a “very important” factor in their 2020 General Election vote, according to the Pew Research Center. Legal disputes and legislative battles persist across the United States: Some examples include Alabama’s Human Life Protection Act, which banned abortion at any stage of pregnancy (the exceptions being if the fetus has a lethal anomaly or the pregnancy presents a serious health risk to the woman), and New York’s Reproductive Health Act, which expanded abortion rights, decriminalized abortion, and eliminated several restrictions on abortion in the state. During President Trump’s term, he not only filled three Supreme Court seats with justices that share his conservative views on abortion, but he also appointed over 200 judges to the federal judiciary who have records of opposition to abortion. The President has expressed support of banning abortion overall, excluding cases of rape, incest, and when the mother’s life is in danger. In contrast, President-elect Joe Biden recently said, “Reproductive rights are a constitutional right. And, in fact, every woman should have that right.” Biden’s beliefs about abortion access have shifted over his 47-year career, but during his presidential race, he has been clear about his support of abortion rights, promising to make Roe v. Wade the “law of the land.”

The Hyde Amendment is a legislative provision banning federal funding of abortion, except to save the life of the woman or if the pregnancy occurred from rape or incest. It’s not federal law but a rule added to the yearly Congress spending bill, which is approved every year. Joe Biden, for the majority of his career, has been a supporter of this amendment. Only recently, and after intense criticism, did Biden reverse his position. Biden said, “If I believe healthcare is a right, as I do, I can no longer support an amendment that makes that right dependent on someone’s ZIP code.”


In his plan for healthcare, Biden said that he wants to continue building on the advancements made by the Affordable Care Act. He said that “the public option will cover contraception and a woman’s constitutional right to choose.”


During a 2019 campaign stop in South Carolina, the Associated Press reported that Biden spoke about how his religious beliefs impacted his views on abortion, saying: “I'm prepared to accept for me, personally, doctrine of my church [on when life begins]...but I'm not prepared to impose that on every other person.”


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