(CNS News) – When asked what President Joe Biden’s plan was to protect abortion rights if Democrats are unable to secure the majority in Congress, Biden said that by executive order he would make sure women seeking healthcare across state lines would not be “accountable for crossing the line.”
He also said he supports the idea of establishing a federal fund for women who take time off to obtain an abortion.
At a presidential forum hosted by NowThis News on Oct.18, Resident Physician Danielle Mathisen asked Biden, “What is your plan to protect abortion rights over the next two years, if Democrats aren’t able to increase the majority in Congress?”
Biden replied, “Well, first of all – it’s the first time the Supreme Court has in fact made a lot of decisions. But it’s the first time they have not only not proclaimed the Constitutional right, but one they acknowledge existed [and have] taken away. And it goes beyond potentially the right to choose.”
“What I have done is, by executive order – what I’m able, I don’t know the votes, but by executive order -- what I’ve been able to do so far, and that is, for example, making sure that a woman seeking to choose getting healthcare across a state line that permits abortion … that they are able to do that. They can’t be held accountable for crossing the line.”
He continued, “Making sure that you cannot – making sure that women who are being looked at as to whether they might seek an abortion, that they’re not able to be followed on their accounts, so that they [law enforcement] can[not] know where they’re going.”
“Making sure that there’s access to a number of items that accommodate availability of OB-GYN help for the health of the mother in the states that still permit choice under Roe,” said the president.
In his Aug. 3 executive order, signed after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June, it states, “The Executive Order directs the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) to consider action to advance access to reproductive healthcare services, including through Medicaid for patients who travel out of state for reproductive healthcare services.
“This directive is in line with the President and the Attorney General’s clear statements on the Administration’s commitment to defending the bedrock right to travel across state lines to seek reproductive healthcare in states where those services remain legal.”
However, to ensure abortion rights for women, Biden confirmed he needed the help of the Senate and the House to uphold the Democratic majority in the upcoming elections. If Republicans succeed in taking the majority and block abortion in every state by passing a federal ban on abortion, Biden said he would veto it and that, “It’s not going to happen as long as I’m president.”
Biden then turned the spotlight on Mathisen, who was withheld curriculum pertaining to abortion by the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. He questioned how many other universities across the country opt-out of teaching OB-GYN students on the health and safety related to pregnancy?
“Pretty much across the board, whether it’s a private or a public institution, just out of fear that that’s somehow aiding and abetting achieving an abortion,” Mathisen said.
Biden also asked how Mathisen and her colleagues managed to teach themselves on the health and safety related to pregnancy. While she said an outside physician not affiliated with the university came to teach the practice, she also said, “A papaya is a very good representation of a uterus, and you can practice on the papaya fruit."
Mathisen ended the interview asking Biden if he would support a federal fund for individuals seeking an abortion who need to take time off work and obtain childcare.
“Absolutely,” Biden said. “The answer’s absolutely, but guess what? We need the same votes [and] we need to reinstate the decision that was struck down by the court. I mean, I do support that and I’ve urged, publicly urged companies to do that. I’ve urged them publicly as president of the United States saying, ‘This is what you should be doing.’”
President Biden and numerous Democrats, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) have proposed codifying into federal law the abortion provisions detailed in the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision.
As Biden’s Aug.3 executive order states, “President Biden continues to call on Congress to codify the right to abortion into federal law and has said he would support changing the filibuster rules to codify Roe v. Wade into law.”
We have to codify Roe v. Wade into law.— President Biden (@POTUS) June 30, 2022
And as I said this morning: If the filibuster gets in the way, then we need to make an exception to get it done.