The announcement by Mr. Kildee that he would support the health care legislation and would not oppose it based on the abortion issue gave a huge lift to House Democratic leaders, who have been working to assure abortion opponents that a vote for the bill would not reflect any change in policy on abortion, including the law known as the Hyde amendment, which prohibits the use of federal money for abortion in most cases.From the statement:
For those who know me, I have always respected and cherished the sanctity of human life. I spent six years studying to be a priest and was willing to devote my life to God. I came to Congress two years after the Hyde amendment became law. And I have spent the last 34 years casting votes to protect the lives of the unborn. I have stood up to many in my party to defend the right to life and have made no apologies for doing so. I now find myself disagreeing with some of the people and groups I have spent a lifetime working with. I have listened carefully to both sides, sought counsel from my priest, advice from family, friends and constituents, and I have read the Senate abortion language more than a dozen times [...] I am convinced that the Senate language maintains the Hyde amendment, which states that no federal money can be used for abortion.