The provision has been passed as a rider on the annual federal budget every year since — but a growing group of Democratic legislators is opposing the law.
Rep. Barbara Lee, D-CA, is the primary sponsor of the EACH Woman Act, which would lift the ban on funding for abortions through Medicaid in all 50 states.
“Forty years of Hyde is 40 too many,” she said in a conference call.
Currently, 17 states provide near-universal Medicaid funding for abortions, while the District of Columbia and 32 states, including North Carolina, follow the Hyde federal standard of Medicaid funding for abortions only in the cases of life endangerment, rape and incest.
South Dakota only provides Medicaid funding in the case of life endangerment, in apparent violation of federal law.
Lee said the Hyde Amendment discriminates against poor women, young women and women of color, all of which are most likely to use Medicaid.
“It’s outrageous and clearly targeted at those (whom) Republicans believe are politically expendable,” she said.
The EACH Woman Act, proposed in Sept. 2015, has received 124 co-sponsors — all of them Democrats.