Harris, Democrats aim at Trump on abortion ruling anniversary

Abortion rights activists gather at the U.S. Supreme Court to mark the second anniversary of the Court overturning Roe v. Wade, in Washington, U.S., June 24, 2024. REUTERS/Nathan Howard

COLLEGE PARK, Maryland — President Joe Biden’s campaign used the second anniversary of the Supreme Court’s decision overturning abortion rights on Monday to spotlight Donald Trump’s role in the ruling, as Democrats zero in on the issue ahead of the November election.

Vice President Kamala Harris, a former prosecutor, said Trump, the Republican former president seeking reelection, was “guilty” of taking away reproductive rights from women. First Lady Jill Biden and other Democrats speaking on Monday also tried to mobilize volunteers and voters around protecting the patchwork remains of abortion access.


“Donald Trump is the sole person responsible for this nightmare,” the president said in a statement.

He said the reversal two years ago of the landmark Roe v Wade ruling of 1973, which gave constitutional protection to abortion rights, has been “devastating.”

“This is a fight for freedom: the fundamental freedom of a woman to make decisions about her own body and not having her government tell her what to do,” Harris said at a campaign event in Maryland.

Trump appointed three conservative Supreme Court justices during his 2017-21 presidency, leading to a change in the court’s balance that sparked the abortion ruling in 2022.

Harris called the plan to overturn Roe v Wade “premeditated.”

“In the case of the stealing of reproductive freedom from the women of America, Donald Trump is guilty,” she said.

Since the 2022 ruling, more than 20 Republican-led states have imposed restrictions on abortion, while the unpopularity of the decision even in some conservative states made it a political liability for Republicans during mid-term elections in 2022.

Abortion access is now almost non-existent in Southern states, forcing tens of thousands of women to cross state lines for abortions, and sparking a rise in medication abortion.

Biden’s team believes the issue could swing the tight Nov. 5 election his way. He will focus on getting a law passed that restores the rights of Roe v Wade if re-elected, White House gender policy council chair Jennifer Klein told reporters Monday.

Trump said in April that abortion laws should be set by individual U.S. states, stepping away from a national abortion ban that anti-abortion groups and some parts of his Republican Party have pushed for.

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