Thursday, November 29, 2007

Former Rep. Henry Hyde Is Dead at Age 83

David Cohen writes for the Feminist Law Professors blog:

Henry Hyde died today.  The AP story says nothing about the millions of women he harmed since 1976 with the Hyde Amendment.  Unfortunate for poor women throughout the country, the Hyde Amendment won’t die with him.

The New York Times reports:

Former Rep. Henry Hyde, the Illinois Republican who steered the impeachment proceedings against President Clinton and was a hero of the anti-abortion movement, died Thursday. He was 83....

Hyde retired from Congress at the end of the last session. Earlier this month, President Bush presented him with the Presidential Medal of Freedom....

He made a name for himself in 1976, just two years after his first election from the district that includes O'Hare Airport, by attaching an amendment to a spending bill banning the use of federal funds to carry out abortions.

What came to be known as the ''Hyde Amendment'' has since become a fixture in the annual debate over federal spending, and has served as an important marker for abortion foes seeking to discourage women from terminating pregnancies.

Hyde was also a leader in passing the ban on so-called partial birth abortions, the first federal restriction on a specific abortion procedure. ''The people we pretend to defend, the powerless, those who cannot escape, who cannot rise up in the streets, these are the ones that ought to be protected by the law,'' he said during the 2003 debate. ''The law exists to protect the weak from the strong.''

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The Presidential Medal of Freedom--no small irony there.

Posted by: Nancy Levit | Nov 30, 2007 5:47:28 AM


Posted by: Caitlin Borgmann | Dec 1, 2007 8:08:56 PM

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