Joe Manchin Would Vote to Codify ‘Right’ to Abortion — but Objects to Portions of Schumer’s Bill

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., speaks with reporters during a news conference on Capitol Hill,
AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) on Wednesday announced that although he would vote to codify abortion, he is opposed to portions of the Senate bill to expand abortion rights and will not vote to pass the “Women’s Health Protection Act.”

Because there is no federal legislation on the books that permits the legalization of abortion nationwide, Democrats are trying to find a way to codify the 1973 ruling the Supreme Court may strike down in the coming months.

Manchin told CNN he will oppose Sen. Chuck Schumer’s (D-NY) initiative to pass the “Women’s Health Protection Act” because it expands abortion past what states have designated as legal. Manchin hails from the conservative state of West Virginia.

Last week, Schumer promised to hold a vote on Wednesday to put senators’ votes on record for midterm voters to weigh. The legislation has little chance of passing, as Manchin and Republicans will likely prevent Democrats from obtaining the 60-vote threshold.

“[W]e are making sure that … every senator will have to vote and every, every American will see how they voted. And I believe the Republican Party, the MAGA Republican Party, will suffer the consequences electorally when the American people see that,” Schumer said.

Nevertheless, Democrats are using the legislation to expand abortion in states that oppose abortion up till birth — an idea that is unpopular with voters.

“Part of what Roe precludes are restrictions like admitting privileges, ultrasounds, mandatory waiting periods, which have been litigated to violate [rights], but which states continue to pass,” Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) explained to Punchbowl News. “And the whole purpose is to say to the states, ‘These issues have been decided. You can’t re-litigate them now. It’s part of Roe that these undue burdens are precluded by Roe.'”

Polling reveals that public opinion is at odds with Schumer’s effort to codify the 1973 ruling. Democrats have failed to secure a majority consensus among voters to enact federal abortion legislation, a Wednesday Politico/Morning Consult poll revealed.

Moreover, seventy-one percent of Americans want significant limits on abortion. Seventy-seven percent support banning infanticide, according to the Republican National Committee. Eighty percent believe third trimester abortions should be illegal. By a 20-point margin, Americans also oppose taxpayer-funded abortions, which Americans currently fund.

Follow Wendell Husebø on Twitter and Gettr @WendellHusebø. He is the author of Politics of Slave Morality.


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