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Biden denies being for 'abortion on demand,' vows to restore 'Roe': '3 trimesters'

U.S. President Joe Biden addresses the nation on the conflict between Israel and Gaza and the Russian invasion of Ukraine from the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, D.C., on October 19, 2023. President Joe Biden delivered a rare Oval Office speech urging Americans to back military aid for Israel and Ukraine at what he calls a perilous moment for democracy around the globe.
U.S. President Joe Biden addresses the nation on the conflict between Israel and Gaza and the Russian invasion of Ukraine from the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, D.C., on October 19, 2023. President Joe Biden delivered a rare Oval Office speech urging Americans to back military aid for Israel and Ukraine at what he calls a perilous moment for democracy around the globe. | JONATHAN ERNST/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

During a Sunday campaign rally in Las Vegas, President Joe Biden criticized former President Donald Trump for claiming he supports "abortion on demand" after the current president promised to restore Roe v. Wade.

Biden highlighted his administration's policies, such as its efforts to combat inflation, during a get-out-the-vote rally.

At one point during the event, which took place two days before Nevada's presidential primary, Biden focused on former President Trump and the Republican Party's stance on abortion. 

The president condemned Trump for taking credit for the Supreme Court overturning Roe in June 2022, a decision that Biden claimed "has taken away a woman's right to choose." The court returned the abortion issue to legislative bodies in its Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, and multiple states enacted restrictions following the ruling.

Amid pro-life advocates and Republicans discussing whether to push for a national abortion ban, Biden promised he would "veto" any such law. He also urged people to register to vote and elect Democratic politicians, promising that he would restore Roe if Democrats occupied the House and Senate.  

"And, by the way, I love how Trump is now saying, 'Biden is for abortion on demand,'" Biden stated. "Not true. That's not what Roe v. Wade said. It said there are three trimesters and how it worked. Trump and his MAGA friends are dividing us, not uniting us."

As attorney Clarke D. Forsythe wrote in an article analyzing Roe, the Supreme Court ruled in 1973 that states could prohibit abortion after viability, except for cases where abortion is necessary to preserve the health of the mother. 

According to Forsythe, the senior counsel of the pro-life organization Americans United for Life, states had to allow abortion for any reason, even during the third trimester, due to Roe's companion case, Doe v. Bolton.

The companion case's definition of "health" included factors such as the woman's physical, psychological or familial circumstances or "anything relevant to the wellbeing of the patient." 

Forsythe wrote how, in 1992, the Supreme Court reaffirmed the Roe decision in Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey, particularly along the lines of "a right to abortion for any reason, at any time of pregnancy." 

"In [Casey], the three justices of the Joint Opinion exercised a critical misjudgment in deciding that the overruling of [Roe] — rather than the Court's continued obstruction of the democratic process as national 'abortion umpire' — would produce more social upheaval and more criticism of the Court," the pro-life attorney wrote. 

"Widespread scholarly opinion has acknowledged that the Court, through [Roe], exacerbated the abortion issue by acting as a near absolute obstacle to the normal workings of the democratic process," Forsythe continued. 

According to a January Marist Poll conducted on behalf of the Knights of Columbus, almost half of the Democrats included in the survey supported considerable abortion restrictions during the first trimester of pregnancy. The poll also found that over two-thirds of Democrat respondents supported a ban on late-term abortions. 

Researchers surveyed 885 registered voters from Jan. 6 through Jan. 9. The margin of error for the overall sample was ±3.5 percentage points and ±3.8 percentage points for the voters.

In the survey, 32% of Democrats said in the survey that they believed "abortion should be available to a woman any time she wants one during her entire pregnancy," with the rest supporting limits. Nineteen percent of Democrat respondents said that "abortion should be allowed only during the first six months of a pregnancy," while 49% said they believed in greater limits on abortion. 

Among the 49% of participants who said they supported greater limits, 29% said that "abortion should be allowed only during the first three months of a pregnancy." Thirteen percent said that they believed that "abortion should be allowed only in cases of rape, incest or to save the life of the mother," and 3% said that "abortion should be allowed only to save the life of the mother." 

Another 4% of respondents said that "abortion should never be permitted under any circumstance," according to the poll. 

Samantha Kamman is a reporter for The Christian Post. She can be reached at: samantha.kamman@christianpost.com. Follow her on Twitter: @Samantha_Kamman

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