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Cole Signs Letter Demanding Protection of Hyde Amendment

January 26, 2021
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) joined Republican Study Committee Chairman Jim Banks and others in sending a letter to congressional leaders regarding protection of the Hyde Amendment and other pro-life provisions traditionally included in annual appropriations bills. First enacted in 1976, the Hyde Amendment prevents federal taxpayer dollars from being used to pay for abortion procedures, with very limited exceptions.

By signing the letter, Cole pledged to oppose any federal government funding bill that would weaken or eliminate longstanding pro-life protections. Cole serves as the top Republican leader of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies. He is also a member of the Pro-Life Caucus.

“I am alarmed that radical Democrats are threatening to dismantle bipartisan precedent on the Hyde Amendment spanning more than four decades,” said Cole. “This pro-life provision has been enacted by presidents of both parties since Jimmy Carter, rightly preventing taxpayer dollars from funding abortions. Even President Biden has expressed his support for this usually bipartisan understanding. I pledge to do all I can to protect this provision, which has saved more than two million unborn children.”

You can view the letter signed by 200 members of the U.S. House of Representatives here. Full text is below:

To Speaker Pelosi, Republican Leader McCarthy, Majority Leader Schumer, and Minority Leader McConnell:

We write to express our unified opposition to Congressional Democrats’ efforts to repeal the Hyde Amendment and other current-law, pro-life appropriations provisions. As part of their pro-abortion crusade, Democrats have taken direct aim at these long-standing, bipartisan protections that generally prevent the federal government from using taxpayer dollars to support abortion procedures.

Repealing these pro-life provisions would destroy nearly half a century of bipartisan consensus. Each year since 1976, Congress has included Hyde protections in annually enacted appropriations. No president in American history has ever vetoed an appropriations bill due to its inclusion of the Hyde Amendment.

Moreover, President Obama maintained the Hyde Amendment in each of his budget proposals. As recent as June 2019, former Vice President Joe Biden supported the Hyde Amendment and acknowledged that it works harmoniously with federal funding for women’s healthcare.

Years of public polling indicates that repealing the Hyde Amendment is opposed by most of the American public. Congressional Democrats now seek to further erode public trust in government by ignoring mainstream public opinion in favor of placating the radical Left.

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. We cannot allow the Hyde Amendment and other important pro-life safeguards to be decimated by Congressional Democrats. Accordingly, we pledge to vote against any government funding bill that eliminates or weakens the Hyde Amendment or other current-law, pro-life appropriations provisions.

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