Biden Press Secretary Fumbles, Evades Question About Abortion

One of the most pressing concerns of pro-life Americans about the incoming Biden administration is its future policies concerning abortion. At the very first press conference only hours after Joe Biden was sworn in as the 46th president, Jen Psaki, Biden’s press secretary, awkwardly deflected a question about those policies, raising even more concerns.

The question came from Owen Jensen, a reporter with EWTN:

JENSEN: “Yeah, hi. Congratulations on your new position. Owen Jensen with EWTN, Global Catholic Network. Two big concerns for pro-life Americans: the Hyde Amendment, which of course keeps taxpayer dollars as you know from paying for abortions, Medicaid abortions. And the Mexico City policy, which under the previous administration, expanded to keep tax dollars from overseas paying for abortions. So, what is President Biden planning on doing on those two items right now?”

PSAKI: “Well, I think we’ll have more to say on the Mexico City policy in the coming days, but I will just take the opportunity to remind all of you that he is a devout Catholic and somebody who attends church regularly. He started his day attending church with his family this morning, but I don’t have anything more for you on that.”

Perhaps Psaki didn’t want to acknowledge, on the first day of the Biden presidency, what Biden promised on the campaign trail: he will revoke the Mexico City policy and supports the removal of the Hyde Amendment from Congressional spending legislation. He also plans to reverse any of the previous administration’s actions that partially defunded Planned Parenthood, such as those affecting Title X family planning funds.

The net result of those actions will be more abortions, paid by taxpayers. It’s not even slightly in doubt.

So why did the White House press secretary deflect the question by offering a statement about Biden’s “devout Catholic” faith and his church attendance? Was it simply because the reporter was from a Catholic news agency? Or was she under orders not to spoil the inauguration’s theme of “unity” by highlighting one of the very first divisive actions of the Biden administration?

A majority of Americans do not favor the global funding of abortion, which is the basis for the Mexico City policy, first announced by the Reagan administration and implemented by every Republican administration since then. However, the policy has been rescinded by every Democrat administration since Reagan.

Neither do Americans support the domestic funding of abortions by taxpayers, which the Hyde Amendment prohibits.

Even the liberal media outlet, Slate, acknowledged in 2019 that, “In every poll, a plurality of Americans opposes public funding of abortions. In every poll but one, that plurality is a majority.” In fact, when those surveyed are informed that the Hyde Amendment prohibits taxpayer funding except in cases of rape, incest, or to save the life of the mother, polls show the gap between those who support Hyde and those who oppose it “aren’t close.” 

Biden has flip-flopped on the Hyde Amendment during his decades in politics. He supported it for 40 years, until 2019, when he first announced his opposition to it, then stated he supported it, and ultimately changed to opposing it, as his campaign website confirms.

Of course, Biden is playing to his base, and to Planned Parenthood in particular. Planned Parenthood’s political action committee was a major donor to Democrats during the last election cycle, and Planned Parenthood’s president, Alexis McGill Johnson, finds the possibilities for the next 100 days “tremendously exciting.”

And the financial support is reciprocated whenever possible. People who donated money for a flag that was used in decorating the National Mall for the Biden inauguration, for example, were informed that part of their donation went to Planned Parenthood.

Now the abortion giant, which received over $600 million in Medicaid and other reimbursements from the federal government during the 2017-18 fiscal year, can look forward to even more favor and taxpayer dollars coming its way.

Is that what the White House Press Secretary was trying so hard to avoid saying?

Photo from TOM BRENNER/REUTERS

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