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This week, 2024 Republican candidate and former President Donald Trump clarified his position on abortion policy.

In a video posted Monday, Trump praised the overturning of Roe v Wade in the summer of 2022, which removed constitutional protections for abortion access and made the procedure a state-level issue. Trump said that abortion rights should be left up to individual states' discretion and did not endorse any federal abortion legislation.

"Many states will be different," Trump said. "Many will have a different number of weeks, or some will have more conservative [policies] than others, and that’s what they will be. At the end of the day, this is all about the will of the people."

President Joe Biden responded by accusing Trump of lying, stating, "If Donald Trump is elected and the MAGA Republicans in Congress put a national abortion ban on the Resolute Desk, Trump will sign it into law.”

On Wednesday, Trump told reporters that he would not sign a federal ban on abortion if he retakes the White House in November.

Responding to Trump's statement, Michael Tyler, a spokesperson for the Biden-Harris campaign, stated, "Trump lies constantly ― about everything ― but has one track record: banning abortion every chance he gets."

Reflecting on Trump's statements on abortion, voices across the spectrum agree that the former president is in a tough spot politically. A large portion of his Republican base strongly opposes abortion, but among moderate voters, which Trump needs to win the election, abortion is viewed more favorably.

A writer in Vox (Left bias) cast doubt on Trump’s statement, arguing that regardless of Trump’s stated position on abortion, there are "powerful groups within Trump’s coalition — both his base of supporters and his stable of former and current advisers — who do care a lot about abortion." Despite Trump’s assurances, the writer concluded these groups are "likely to have an outsize influence on policy in a second Trump term, in part because Trump has few social policy positions of his own."

The National Review Editorial Board (Right bias) argued that Trump is "reflecting his party’s overwrought fear of pro-choice voters," adding, "during the vaunted pro-choice backlash of the past two years, not one pro-life senator or governor has lost his office in an election." Pushing back on claims that abortion has hurt Republicans politically, the board concluded, "it is also true that Trump himself and his various manias have cost Republicans elections. If it happens again, we can be sure he will blame it on pro-lifers."

Matt Lewis (Center bias) stated that Trump "delivered a clear message to anti-abortion conservatives: The party’s over. Don’t count on getting anything else from me.” The pushback from some right-rated voices will not dissuade Trump, Lewis concluded, since "social conservatives were always a cheap date. Trump knows that they will never abandon him, regardless of what he says or does."

Responding to accusations that Trump is flip-flopping on abortion, a writer in The Federalist (Right bias) argued that "Biden has also radically changed his position on abortion," stating, "Even during the 2020 campaign, Biden was still pro-Hyde Amendment — a law that bans direct government funding for abortion. This position, if we trust polls, is still popular. But it only took two days of criticism from progressives on social media to convince this feckless, weak man to capitulate to the far left and 'denounce' the amendment."

An analysis from Insider (Lean Left bias) determined that "Trump isn't alone in his struggle" to appease the anti-abortion faction of his base while still appealing to moderate voters. The analysis states, "Republicans writ large haven't figured out a way to effectively address abortion since Roe's reversal. It doesn't help matters that many leaders, including the former president, previously backed tougher restrictions on abortion even if, for political reasons, they may now try to distance themselves from those comments."

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More from the Left

The Man Who Snuffed Out Abortion Rights Is Here to Tell You He Is a Moderate
Jamelle Bouie (opinion)

"Trump is saying what he thinks his audience — in the public and in the press — wants to hear. He’s trying to put abortion in the rearview mirror, to treat it as a settled fact that he wants a less strident approach to reproductive rights."

More from the Right

Despite ceding abortion law to states, Trump can protect the unborn
The Washington Examiner (opinion)

"Regardless of how the 2024 elections go, almost no scenario exists in which the GOP has the 60 pro-life votes to get any abortion restriction bill to the president’s desk. As president, Trump could make progress on the life matter, but he needs to take a more creative approach. If he wins, he should pursue policies that reduce the number of abortions, primarily by curbing unwanted pregnancies."

More from the Center

Donald Trump's Abortion Policies Aren't as Unpopular As You Might Think

"The survey conducted for Newsweek by Redfield & Wilton Strategies in February shows that 40 percent of voters agree with Trump that abortion rights should be left to individual state governments. Comparably, 40 percent said the federal government should determine abortion laws and 20 percent said they didn't know which level of government it should be decided by."

See more big stories from the past week.