Though Joe Biden may be a 2020 front-runner, this past week was a real test for his campaign. Biden received a lot of criticism last week for two votes Biden made early on in his Senate career: the Hyde Amendment and The Iraq War vote.
The Hyde Amendment was passed in 1976 restricting federal funds from aiding abortions, a bill that Biden voted for in his early years in Senate. With recent legislation in states like New York and Alabama and Georgia, abortion is a hot topic for 2020 presidential candidates. His campaign told Huffington Post that Biden still supports his position on the Hyde Amendment saying, ““the Hyde Amendment does not prevent organizations in the U.S. that provide lifesaving health care services for women from receiving the federal funding they need.”
However, this amendment prevents Medicaid, Medicare, and other federal health insurance programs from covering the majority of abortions, affecting low-income and women of color the most, those who need the most help.
Other candidates immediately slammed Biden for his continued support of this policy.
Elizabeth Warren’s statement on the matter caught the most attention: “Understand this: Women of means will still have access to abortions. Who won’t will be poor women, will be working women, will be women who can’t afford to take off three days from work, will be very young women who have been raped, will be women who have been molested by someone in their own family,” Warren said. “We do not pass laws to take away that freedom from the women who are most vulnerable. It’s been the law for a while, and it’s been wrong for a long time.”
After the continued outrage, Biden quickly changed his mind by the following day.
This flip-flop brought Biden more heat for another issue: his Iraq War vote. In 2002, Biden voted for President Bush to invade Iraq. Candidate Seth Moulton called Biden out in a tweet the day after Biden’s change of heart on the Hyde Amendment, and Moulton isn’t the only candidate concerned about this vote. According to a Politico/Morning Consult poll, 3 in 10 Democrats are “turned off” by his Iraq War vote, and 40 percent of millennials said the vote made them less inclined to vote for him.
But Biden’s issues don’t stop there.
At a town hall event in Berlin, New Hampshire on Tuesday, Biden attempted to joke about his history of inappropriately touching women and invading their personal space saying, “I want the press to know, she pulled me close,” referring to a woman who had whispered in his ear at the event.
And last of Biden’s week of embarrassment, Biden’s campaign admitted to plagiarizing part of his climate plan that he released on Tuesday. “Several citations were inadvertently left out of the final version of the 22-page document,” the campaign said. “As soon as we were made aware of it, we updated to include the proper citations.” It wasn’t just lack of citations but included full identical sentences linked to two environmental groups: BlueGreen Alliance and the Carbon Capture Coalition’s Center for Climate and Energy Solutions. Aside from the plagiarism, the proposal lacked firm details and a lose timeline that would do little to prevent global warming.
Click here to read the full 6/7/2019 article by Lydia O’Connor from The Huffington Post.