By Sara Burnett | Related Press
Donald Trump is going through new blowback from anti-abortion activists for refusing to decide to nationwide abortion restrictions and for calling Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ signing of a six-week ban on the process a “horrible mistake.”
Talking Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” Trump repeatedly declined to say whether or not he would help a federal ban on abortion. He stated he might “reside with” the process being banned by particular person states or nationwide by means of federal motion, although he stated “from a authorized standpoint, I believe it’s most likely higher” to be dealt with on the state degree.
Concerning the invoice signed by DeSantis, which bans abortions earlier than many ladies know they’re pregnant, Trump stated, “I believe what he did is a horrible factor and a horrible mistake.”
To date, the previous president has dominated the 2024 subject whereas at occasions spurning the anti-abortion teams that historically have enormous affect in Republican primaries. However Trump’s direct assault on DeSantis, whom he’s lengthy handled as his chief rival, might give the Florida governor new fodder as he tries to regain momentum in his marketing campaign and solidify his second-place standing.
Posting on X, previously often called Twitter, DeSantis marketing campaign spokesman Bryan Griffin wrote of Trump: “If you wish to appease Democrats, right here’s your man. If you wish to defeat the Democrats in 2024, (DeSantis) is the one alternative.”
One other marketing campaign spokesman, Andrew Romeo, distributed to reporters a roundup of conservative teams criticizing Trump and accused him of repeatedly compromising with Democrats.
“Republicans throughout the nation know that Ron DeSantis won’t ever again down,” Romeo stated.
The nation’s largest anti-abortion group, which backs a nationwide ban on abortions at 15 weeks of being pregnant, rapidly launched an announcement saying something much less restrictive “is senseless.”
“We’re at a second the place we want a human rights advocate, somebody who is devoted to saving the lives of kids and serving moms in want. Each single candidate ought to be clear on how they plan to try this,” stated Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of Susan B. Anthony Professional-Life America.
The Supreme Courtroom ruling overturning Roe v. Wade left the choice of whether or not and how one can prohibit abortion to the states, making a patchwork of legal guidelines throughout the nation, with most Republican-led states imposing new restrictions and states led by Democrats passing protections. Twenty-five million ladies of childbearing age now reside in states the place abortions are harder to get than earlier than the ruling.
Trump has approached abortion from a political stance, saying that the Supreme Courtroom’s resolution gave conservatives room to barter new restrictions. He has argued Republicans’ push for abortion restrictions damage the GOP within the 2022 midterm elections and that GOP candidates have to do a greater job of explaining the problem.
Banning abortion at six weeks of being pregnant, as Florida enacted earlier this yr, is unpopular with the U.S. public, based on an Related Press-NORC Heart for Public Affairs Analysis carried out in June. The ballot discovered that 73% of all U.S. adults consider abortion ought to be allowed as much as six weeks of being pregnant, which is when cardiac exercise in a fetus could also be detected and earlier than ladies usually know they’re pregnant. About half of Individuals say abortions ought to be permitted as much as 15 weeks.
In that ballot, 56% of Republicans stated abortion ought to be allowed of their state as much as 6 weeks and 29% supported making the process authorized as much as 15 weeks.
However in Iowa’s first-in-the-nation Republican caucuses, evangelicals and different social conservatives who strongly oppose abortion make up nearly all of those that take part and determine the winner. Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds this summer season signed an abortion ban much like Florida’s. Reynolds has not endorsed a candidate.
Trump has known as himself the “essentially the most pro-life president in American historical past” and famous that three of his Supreme Courtroom picks shaped a part of the conservative majority that overturned Roe.
He has to this point declined to go together with a few of his rivals, together with his onetime vice chairman, Mike Pence, who’s pushing for nationwide bans that might take impact comparatively early in a being pregnant.
Interviews with GOP voters and activists over the previous a number of months counsel a break up between individuals happy with Trump’s document throughout his time period and others who need Trump to endorse a nationwide abortion ban.
Some Republicans in some key states, together with these backing his rivals, expressed displeasure after the interview.
Amongst them was South Carolina state Rep. John McCravy, who sponsored the latest, restrictive abortion measure, which bans the follow in his state after round six weeks of being pregnant. South Carolina can be among the many early states to decide on a nominee. McCravy described himself in an interview as “definitely upset.”
“It sounded utterly out of step along with his staunch help for all times whereas he was president,” he stated.
McCravy has endorsed South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott within the 2024 GOP presidential main however advised AP final week, “Trump would most likely be an in depth second, noting his Supreme Courtroom appointments and his attending the March for Life rally in Washington.
Kristen Waggoner, CEO of the conservative authorized group Alliance Defending Freedom, additionally took difficulty.
“Legal guidelines defending the unborn aren’t a ‘horrible mistake.’ They’re the hallmark of a simply and ethical society,” she wrote on X. “Governors who defend life ought to be applauded, not attacked.”
Burnett reported from Chicago. Related Press writers Jonathan J. Cooper in Phoenix, Meg Kinnard in Columbia, South Carolina, and Michelle L. Value in New York contributed to this report.