Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump says that he prefers states to make their own local laws regarding whether the practice should be legal. He also declined to endorse a federal limit on abortion, raising some eyebrows among the former president’s faithful supporters. Let’s see what went down.

A Typical Trump Flip-Flop

As anyone who’s watched Donald Trump over the last decade knows, he dislikes being pinned down in his statements. That’s usually why his statements are vague.

Source: Flickr/Fuschia Foot

In this case, a video posted to social media saw him taking credit for overturning Roe v. Wade, a landmark Supreme Court legislation that defined abortion rights for the country.

Not Far Enough

While Trump was instrumental in overturning the ruling by taking the decision for abortion out of the government’s hands and placing it in the hands of state governments, his statements were not celebratory.

Source: Flickr/Carmen Nissan

Some of Trump’s supporters believe that he should push for a nationwide ban on abortion, but the former president is not interested in putting pressure on states to conform to what he wants.

Doing the Right Thing

In his video, he said that he gave the states the right to make their own laws based on the majority of people believing a particular thing. To this end, he left it up to them to “do the right thing.”

Source: Flickr/Bob Simmons

He further went on to say that based on what the majority of people in that state believed in, the vote would reflect it. States that wanted legal abortion as part of their laws could have it.

Strangely Democratic

A few people were taken aback by how democratic this statement seemed. Trump seemed to be against democracy, especially after he encouraged his followers to raid the Capitol in January 2020.

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Yet this seems like a typical thing for him as a president. He didn’t want to deal with the messy fallout of Roe v. Wade on a national level and shifted the responsibility to a local level instead.

Campaigning Since 2016

Trump has been pushing for the overturning of Roe v. Wade since 2016, and in 2022, the legislation was finally scrapped as states were given the right to make their own laws on abortion.

Source: Flickr/Gage Skidmore

Unfortunately, many Republicans have paid a heavy price for their views on abortion. Democrats have reminded the electorate who was responsible for choosing the justices that overturned Roe v. Wade.

A Statement Promised Since Last Week

Trump had promised a statement to press on abortion since last week. His statements were supposed to address a ban on abortions after six weeks in Florida.

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Opponents of the ban have been lobbying heavily to prevent it from becoming law. They argue that some mothers aren’t even aware that they’re pregnant at the six-week mark.

A 15-Week National Ban Suggested

Florida’s current ban on abortion limits it to 15 weeks, allowing the mother to know she’s pregnant but giving her a short window to decide whether it’s something she wants to do.

Source: Flickr/Shane Conneely

Many of Trump’s supporters pushed him to suggest a 15-week national ban on abortion. Others warned that such harsh national-level legislation would be a non-starter in Congress.

Supports Exceptions to Abortions

When teasing his imminent statement on the issue, Trump said that Republicans should follow their hearts and minds when voting to allow abortion and institute timed bans on the practice.

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The former president is not as harsh a hardliner as some suppose he is. He has spoken about exceptions for abortion in cases of rape, incest, and if the life of the mother is in jeopardy.

Deeply Disappointing to Some

Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America President Marjorie Dannenfelser said the group was deeply disappointed by Trump’s position and suggested that ceding the decision to the states is a bad choice.

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Dannenfelser suggests that allowing states to have the final say on abortion puts the ball in the Democrats’ court and will enable them to set up legislation allowing for abortion in many states.

National Protections Against Brutality

A core sticking point that Dannenfelser has with Trump’s delegation for abortion rights is that she believes the state should provide protection for unborn babies and mothers at a national level.

Source: Flickr/Chase Carter

She calls for a complete removal of the “abortion industry” and blames them for undue brutality, saying that the state should expend its resources to stop it from happening.

Trump Is Endorsing Bans

According to Ammar Moussa, director of rapid response for the Biden campaign, Trump is not only endorsing abortion bans but is boasting about his role in ensuring that they happen.

Source: Flickr/Fred Seiber

The former president has acknowledged that some of the bans in Republican states are in line with his beliefs. However, he has also stated that he believes in exceptions.

In-Vitro Fertilization Raises Some Questions

A primary concern for Republicans is how the law sees in-vitro fertilization. Congress has already passed legislation recognizing a fertilized egg as a human being under the 14th Amendment.

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However, if this were the case, then IVF facilities would be in danger of being prosecuted since many of the embryos that are not implanted are simply destroyed.

Court Ruling Raises Some Red Flags

In February, a court ruling in Alabama threatened to shut down an IVF facility for its procedure since the law held that fertilized embryos were recognized as people.

Source: Flickr/Steve Snodgrass

Republicans aimed to distance themselves from this ruling, and Trump stated that he is in support of IVF facilities, stating it should be easier for women to get pregnant, not harder.

Criticism of Poor Handling

Trump has been quite outspoken about his views on abortion and has spent a lot of time highlighting how Republicans lose political capital because of their stance on the issue.

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His moderate stance on the issues might rub a lot of GOP members the wrong way, but he thinks that the No Exceptions rule loses Republicans more votes than it gets them.

Trump Condemns the Six-Week Ban

On one of his more vocal rants, Trump laid into Florida governor Ron DeSantis for his six-week ban on abortion, stating that it should be considered a “terrible mistake.”

Source: Flickr/Gage Skidmore

Last year at a CNN Town Hall, Trump refused to make a solid statement on whether he would sign a national ban if elected but did say that no more Roe v. Wade put the pro-life supporters in a good position.

Holding Firm On State Rights

While he has also stated in other programs that he has considered the 15-week ban that his supporters are talking about, he hasn’t come out and said that he would make it happen. This has led to some outrage from people who believe he should be taking a more hardline approach to the issue despite his personal opinions.

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Instead, no matter what he’s talking about, he’s always stated that abortion should be a state issue. Be advised that both federal and state sides should have discussions but leave the final say in the state’s jurisdiction.

Federal Restrictions Are a Nightmare

Anti-abortion activists see a federal ruling to be quite tricky since it would require a lot of effort to attain the 60 votes necessary to overcome a filibuster attempt by the Democrats. Chances are Democrats will fight as much as possible to stop anti-abortion legislation from becoming the norm.

Source: Flickr/Peter O’Connor

Some Republicans have already introduced legislation enshrining a 15-week ban, but the law hasn’t gone anywhere and lacks the support it requires to pass. However, activists are hopeful.

Solving the Problem In a Novel Way

Many of the Republicans who are preparing for a new Trump presidency know that they probably won’t get a majority to pass anti-abortion legislation, but they’re putting things in place.

Source: Flickr/Aia Fernandez

If they can’t make it illegal to get an abortion, they can make it more difficult for people to find a place to get the procedure done. This approach doesn’t even need Congress to approve it.

More Explicit Discussion Needed

Several GOP members believe that the Republican party needs to be more forthcoming and honest in their views about abortion. A more open and honest air will help to highlight issues.

Source: Flickr/Julie Kertesz

The proponents of more explicit discussion of the topic are afraid that by hiding the topic from discussion, they risk losing ground to Democrats who like to state their opinions out in the open.

Trump’s Celebration of the 6-Week Ban

When DeSantis passed the 6-week ban in Florida, Trump stated that without him overturning Roe v. Wade, there would be no six-week abortion ban, but he stated that he wasn’t about to make it a national issue. President Biden said that Trump had already said his peace when it came to the abortion debate. Whether it was six weeks or 15 weeks didn’t matter. He had made his position clear.

Source: Flickr/Andreas Graulund

Trump’s position on abortion might seem to see-saw, but it’s unlikely he’ll introduce a national ban. Like most things, he won’t do something that will require him to take responsibility, aside from casually. His statement in response to DeSantis’ ban is an excellent example. He’s not willing to go the distance to accept he’s responsible for what he himself terms a “terrible decision.” But he’s willing to do it to make DeSantis look bad.