As the national battle over abortion persists, it seems the White House isn’t willing to reveal specifics surrounding when — or if — President Joe Biden believes the procedure should be restricted.
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A tense exchange Friday between White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre and Fox News’ White House correspondent, Peter Doocy, ended in a stalemate after the reporter pressed Jean-Pierre for an answer.
“Does President Biden favor any limits on abortion?” Doocy asked.
Jean-Pierre responded by stating the administration has been “clear” on the matter yet didn’t give a straightforward or concise answer. Instead, she focused on national efforts by Republicans to restrict abortion, mainly targeting Sen. Lindsey Graham’s (R-S.C.) proposed 15-week ban.
Watch the exchange:
“[Republicans] are calling for a national ban which takes us backwards,” Jean-Pierre said. “And will put at risk the health of women.”
She went on to decry “extreme Republicans,” warning they’re also looking to take aim at privacy, contraception, and marriage.
“I’m not going to get into specifics here,” Jean-Pierre said on the abortion front, to which Doocy offered a rebuttal and questioned why the White House was so reticent about giving an explicit response.
“Why, why not get into specifics?” he asked. “The Republicans are saying we don’t want abortion after 15 weeks. Why can’t you say how many weeks the president thinks the limit should be?”
He wouldn’t let the matter go, though Jean-Pierre was clearly uninterested in responding with specifics. When she moved on to take another question, Doocy pushed back and called out the refusal.
“You did not answer my question,” he said.
This exchange is the latest spat to emerge as Democrats and Republicans double down on the abortion front. While the former generally seek to expand abortion rights, the latter are looking for ways to restrict the procedure and protect the unborn.
Graham’s latest move is the first national effort of late to place a cap on abortion. These developments come on the heels of the U.S. Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade, the 1973 decision that legalized abortion nationwide.
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