With many states enacting new abortion laws (New York more pro-abortion, Alabama more anti-abortion), everyone is trying to position themselves for an overturn of Roe v. Wade. This is becoming a very hot topic as many believe if Trump appoints another conservative Supreme Court Justice (for example Ruth B. Ginsburg age (86) or Stephen Breyer age (80) could resign), The Court would change to a 6-3 conservative majority and might curtail or even overturn the landmark 1973 abortion rights ruling.
Trump and Biden on abortion over time
Trump is strongly pro-life (claiming he has the same position as Ronald Reagan), support the Hyde Amendment, and says he wants to cut funding for planned parenthood in his speeches. This is a 360 degree flip from his comments in 1999 when he said “I’m very pro-choice.” He also said at that time, “I hate the concept of abortion. I hate it. I hate everything it stands for. I cringe when I listen to people debating the subject. But you still — I just believe in choice.”
Biden started out in politics as pro-life, complained that Roe v. Wade went “too far” and voted to return the issue of abortion to the states. He later changed his mind and voted for a ban on partial-birth abortion. He is now saying, “choice should remain between a woman and her doctor.”
Trump and Biden on the Hyde Amendment that refuses government funding for abortion
Biden has repeatedly voted for the Hyde amendment, but just this week announced he was for repealing it and is now saying that if Congress decided to codify abortion rights, he would support it, if it becomes necessary.
Trump campaigned on removing funding for Planned Parenthood but nothing has happened. The Trump Administration revised Title X, creating a new rule that bars taxpayer-funded family planning clinics form referring women to abortion providers. Abortion supoprters found a judge to block it.
The President declared himself “strongly Pro-Life, with the three exceptions – Rape, Incest and protecting the Life of the mother.”
The former Vice President claimed the Alabama law, and other state laws like it are “unconstitutional.” Yet, worried about what a future Court ruling might decide is constitutional, he asserted, “Congress must move to enshrine abortion rights into federal law” referring to the new Alabama abortion law. Biden tweeted, “Republicans in AL, FL, GA, and OH are ushering in laws that clearly violate Roe v Wade and they should be declared unconstitutional. Roe v Wade is settled law and should not be overturned. This choice should remain between a woman and her doctor.”
Biden did not tweet that both sides are pushing severe laws, such as New York or Virginia pushing abortion into the birthing period, perhaps even after birth.
Biden and Trump have both flipped their position, but Trump can at least claim he’s been consistent since running for public office. Over Biden’s long political career, he appears to simply have moved with his party on the issue. Both men are now completely in sync with the most active members of their respective political parties.