POLITICS

Obama echoes Clinton’s ‘safe, legal, and rare’ in Roe vs. Wade statement

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Politics,Beltway Confidential,Joel Gehrke

President Obama made a more moderate statement on abortion than the Democratic Party campaigned on last year, as followed Bill Clinton in emphasizing the need to lower the number of abortions in the United States.

“Today and every day, my Administration continues our efforts to reduce unintended pregnancies, support maternal and child health, and minimize the need for abortion,” Obama said in his statement on the 40th anniversary of the Roe vs. Wade decision.  The statement parallels Clinton’s “safe, legal, and rare” formulation — which Obama himself used in 2010.

“I think Bill Clinton had the right formulation a couple of decades ago, which is abortion should be safe, legal, and rare,” Obama said.  “I think it’s something all of us should recognize is a difficult, oftentimes tragic situation that families are wrestling with.”

But the platform he campaigned on while firing up his base and accusing Republicans of waging a war on women took a different position.

“The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy, including a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay,” the party platform said.

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