Rep. Dan Lipinski (Ill.), one of the few pro-life Democrats in Congress, said special interest groups have pushed Joe Biden to an extreme position on abortion during the Democratic primary.
"[Biden] was always in favor of the Hyde Amendment and opposed to taxpayer funding of abortion, but when he announced he was running for president, he felt running in the Democratic presidential primary he had to change his position," Lipinski told the National Catholic Register.
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"I think that exemplifies the pressure now that is put by outside groups on Democrats to take an extreme position on the abortion issue and certainly something that's new in the last couple of years."
Lipinski ripped the influence of pro-abortion special interest groups, which bankrolled primary opponent Marie Newman's campaign. Planned Parenthood Action Fund, NARAL Pro-Choice America, and EMILY’s List spent a combined $1.5 million to support Newman, who narrowly defeated Lipinski in last month's Democratic primary.
Lipinski said a pro-life Democrat who wants to run for office should prepare for these special interest groups to spend large amounts of money supporting extreme pro-abortion candidates.
"Democrats running for president understand that they can't have these groups opposing them," he said. "That's why they take the extreme position on abortion."
Biden repeatedly voted for the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits federal funding of abortion, during his time in the Senate before changing his stance last June in the face of pressure from the left. He also vowed to codify Roe v. Wade into law as president.
Biden's newfound opposition to the Hyde Amendment is out of step with the American people, who are largely supportive of the ban on federal funding of abortion.
Lipinski also warned that the Democratic Party's extremism on the issue will push young pro-life voters away. He said he often speaks to young pro-life people who tell him they are "turned off" by the party's stance on abortion.
In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, legal battles are raging over whether abortions should continue as elective surgery bans are enacted across the country. Authorities in several states are arguing that abortion facilities use vital medical equipment that should be directed towards helping treat coronavirus patients, but abortion providers have argued abortions are essential health care.