The Hyde Amendment isn't going anywhere

With Biden’s shift on Hyde, aligning him with the rest of the 2020 Democratic field, it is a certainty that the party’s nominee will again support repealing Hyde. Still, if the Democrat defeats Donald Trump, it is nearly as certain that the next president won’t repeal Hyde. A 60-vote Democratic supermajority in the Senate that can break Republican filibusters is mathematically unrealistic. Even if Democrats won a slim majority in the chamber, and that slim majority voted to junk the legislative filibuster (two very big “ifs”), with polls indicating weak support for public funding of abortions, enough purple state Democrats may refuse to go along.

We will likely see another example of Democratic acquiescence on Hyde in a matter of days. The annual health spending bill is coming up for a vote in the Democratically controlled House, and yet again, the bill includes the Hyde Amendment. According to the Washington Post, a tiny group of Democrats is pushing to strip Hyde out, but their amendment may not get a vote, as leaders don’t want to jeopardize passage of the rest of the bill. Not even Planned Parenthood or NARAL Pro-Choice America is lobbying against it; the appropriations legislation has other provisions they support, and they recognize the Hyde fight is a sure loser.

Four House members and seven senators are running for president right now, many of whom were hounding Biden on Hyde mere days ago. They will soon have to vote on Hyde as part of this health spending bill.