Trump Admits That His Abortion ‘Position’ Is Only About Getting Elected

On the debate stage, Donald Trump rambled around the topic of abortion while Joe Biden generally floundered.

Trump Admits That His Abortion ‘Position’ Is Only About Getting Elected

Despite the fact that it’s currently June, the first general election debate between the current president and the former president happened on CNN Thursday night, for some reason. Nevertheless, we persist. On abortion rights, presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump stuck to his latest talking point—that, after all three of his Supreme Court nominees voted to overturn Roe v. Wade, abortion is a state issue. But he sounded pretty tentative about it all and basically admitted that he’s just saying this “states’ rights” stuff so he can get elected—which conveniently helps keep him out of prison.

“Now the states are working it out. If you look at Ohio, it was a decision that was…it was a little bit of liberal. Kansas, I would say the same thing,” Trump rambled, referring to abortion ballot measures from 2022 and 2023. “But Texas is different, Florida is different, but they’re all making their own decisions right now, and right now the states control it. That’s the vote of the people.” Please note the use of the temporal qualifier “right now,” not once, but twice. Trump could have said “and it should stay with the states,” but he very much did not.

Trump continued: “Like Ronald Reagan, I believe in the exceptions. I am a person that believes in that and frankly, I think it’s important to believe in that. Some people, you have to follow your heart. Some people don’t believe in that, but I believe in the exceptions for rape, incest, and the life of the mother. I tell people follow your heart, but you have to get elected also, because that has to do with other things. You got to get elected.” It’s almost as if he’s telling people to lie about abortion in order to win!

His debate comments are reminiscent of an April Truth Social video in which he said that “states will determine” what their abortion laws are; he notably didn’t say that states should determine abortion access instead of the federal government. Trump added, “You must follow your heart on this issue. But remember, you must also win elections to restore our culture.”

Trump repeating this framing on the debate stage is actually quite illuminating. He seems desperate for voters to believe his position is that abortion law “should be left to the states,” and he will get some help from new outlets that repeat his comments uncritically, just like they did after his April video.

The moderators didn’t ask about the 19th-century Comstock Act, a law that Trump allies want him to use to restrict medication abortion, but they did ask Trump about the drug, mifepristone. (In an April interview with Time, Trump said he’d release a policy in two weeks but never did.) The question was, “The federal government still plays a role in whether or not women have access to abortion pills. They’re used in about two-thirds of all abortions. As President, would you block abortion medication?” Trump responded by falsely claiming that the Supreme Court somehow reaffirmed access to mifepristone in a recent case, when all they did was say that the plaintiffs challenging the pill couldn’t bring the lawsuit. “First of all, the Supreme Court just approved the abortion pill, and I agree with the decision to have done that, and I will not block it,” he said. OK!

The sad fact is that none of this will get as much coverage as President Joe Biden’s halting and, yes, low-energy performance. He sounded and looked like shit and an NBC News reporter said that Biden has a cold. Well, that’s unfortunate timing but his team should have hopped him up with every legal substance known to man because our rights and futures depend on him beating Trump. The analysts on the CNN post-debate panel said they were getting frantic text messages about Biden’s performance and some wondered aloud if he would step aside at or before the Democratic National Convention in August.

So, overall that sucked and now we all get to feel more stressed.

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