Trump Claims He’ll “Never” Call for Restricting Birth Control, After Saying He’s “Looking at” Restricting Birth Control

From Mitch McConnell to the conservative wing of the Supreme Court, there are many people who deserve blame for the overturn of Roe v. Wade in June 2022. One person who deserves much of that blame is Donald Trump, who vowed while first running for president to exclusively nominate antiabortion justices, and then did exactly that. And now, nearly two years after the constitutional right to an abortion was scrapped, the man largely responsible is suggesting birth control could be on the table.

In an interview on Pittsburgh’s KDKA news station, Trump was asked, “Do you support any restrictions on a person’s right to contraception?” And his answer was not a resounding “no.” Instead, he responded: “We’re looking at that, and I’m gonna have a policy on that very shortly, and I think it’s something that you’ll find interesting. And it’s another issue that’s very interesting, but you will find it, I think, very smart; I think it’s a smart decision. But we’ll be releasing it very soon.”

Asked if he was implying that he would support states’ choices to ban certain contraceptives, Trump merely said he’d be providing more details “within a week or so,” adding: “Things really do have a lot to do with the states, and some states are going to have different policy than others.”

Obviously, that’s a hugely chilling thing for a man who could soon be president (again) to say. After his comments emerged, Trump took to Truth Social to declare: “I HAVE NEVER, AND WILL NEVER ADVOCATE IMPOSING RESTRICTIONS ON BIRTH CONTROL, or other contraceptives. This is a Democrat fabricated lie, MISINFORMATION/DISINFORMATION, because they have nothing else to run on except FAILURE, POVERTY, AND DEATH. I DO NOT SUPPORT A BAN ON BIRTH CONTROL, AND NEITHER WILL THE REPUBLICAN PARTY!”

Why didn’t Trump just say that in the interview? Only he knows. Regardless, it’s little comfort to hear that the ex-president supposedly won’t “advocate” for restrictions on birth control, given that his official stance on reproductive rights is that he’s more than happy to let states do whatever they want.

In a Time interview published last month, Trump said the federal government should not get involved in states’ enactments of partial or total abortion bans, even if said states take the dystopian step of monitoring pregnancies so that they can prosecute anyone who obtains an abortion after the law says they can. “I think they might do that,” Trump said of the disturbing prospect. Asked if he was comfortable with states criminally charging women who obtain abortions after the law allows, he said: “It’s irrelevant whether I’m comfortable or not. It’s totally irrelevant, because the states are going to make those decisions.” (As Time noted, President Joe Biden “has said he would fight state antiabortion measures in court and with regulation.”)

Trump may think it helps him politically to suggest he might restrict access to contraception, as he did in the KDKA interview, but to actually do so would be hugely unpopular. As The Washington Post notes, a 2023 Gallup poll showed that a whopping 88% of Americans—including 86% of Republicans—“said birth control was morally acceptable.”

In a statement, a Biden campaign spokeswoman said, “Women across the country are already suffering from Donald Trump’s post-Roe nightmare, and if he wins a second term, it’s clear he wants to go even further by restricting access to birth control and emergency contraceptives.”

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