Clinton Running Mate Kaine Endorses Repeal of Hyde Amendment on Abortion

The position is a reversal for the Catholic Democrat.

Senator Tim Kaine listens to testimony during a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on May 26, 2016, in Washington.

Photographer: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Democratic vice-presidential pick Tim Kaine has privately told nominee Hillary Clinton he will support repeal of the Hyde Amendment, a 1976 provision that bans the use of federal dollars for abortion services, Clinton spokesman Jesse Ferguson and Kaine spokeswoman Amy Dudley said Tuesday.

The position is a reversal for Kaine, who earlier this month told the Weekly Standard, a conservative magazine, that he's "traditionally been a supporter of the Hyde amendment."

It aligns the Virginia senator with Clinton and other reproductive-rights advocates, who argue that the decades-old Hyde Amendment, which primarily affects Medicaid, is an impediment for low-income women seeking abortions.

The Democratic Party platform approved this week included a plank calling for repeal of the amendment and other measures that "impede a woman's access to abortion."

Abortion foes view the Hyde Amendment, which is routinely attached to federal spending bills, as one of their great successes.

Kaine's nuanced position on abortion rights raised some eyebrows among progressives as Clinton was considering him to be her running mate. A Catholic, he has said he opposes abortion but doesn't want to outlaw the procedure.

Appearing Tuesday on CNN's "The Lead With Jake Tapper," Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook said that "voters can be 100 percent confident that Tim Kaine is going to fight to protect a woman's right to choose."

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