After the US Supreme Court reversed Roe v. Wade, President Joe Biden stated on Thursday that he would support an exemption to the Senate filibuster to maintain access to abortion.
In Madrid, where he was attending a NATO summit, Biden remarked at a press conference, "If the filibuster gets in the way, it's like voting rights." According to the Democratic president, "the filibuster should be waived for this step to cope with the Supreme Court ruling."
Biden, a former senator, has been hesitant to back changes to the filibuster, which allows any member of the 100-member chamber to stop legislation from being acted upon until it receives 60 votes. He did, however, support breaking the law earlier this year when it came to voting rights, and his most recent remarks make it obvious that he's willing to do the same for abortion.
In the end, Biden's support for altering the filibuster in the 50-50 Senate could not matter. Such a move would require unanimous support from the Senate Democratic caucus, but at least two Democratic senators, Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Joe Manchin of West Virginia are opposed to it.
Despite having few options, the president has been urged to use as many executive actions as possible to defend the right to an abortion. In an interview with governors on Friday, Biden stated, "I'll have news to make then."
At the news conference on Thursday, Biden vehemently disagreed with the Supreme Court's ruling on abortion and reiterated his concerns that other constitutional safeguards might be in jeopardy. He claimed that one factor that had created instability was the Supreme Court of the United States' extraordinary actions in overturning not only Roe v. Wade but also, in essence, undermining the right to privacy.
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