Republican Presidential Hopeful Haley Won’t Back Federal Abortion Rules

( – Former U.N. Ambassador and Republican presidential hopeful Nikki Haley said she will not back efforts to regulate abortion at the federal level.

Speaking to CBS News on May 14th, Haley said federal regulation of abortion was an “unrealistic” expectation for the next president and she will not promise something that she thinks is dishonest. 

Haley opposes abortion but says it would be much harder to come to an agreement in the national Congress than it is for the states. While serving as South Carolina governor, Haley signed a bill that capped abortions at the 20th week of pregnancy. 

“We haven’t had 60 pro-life senators in 100 years,” Haley said, describing the difficulty of getting Congress onto the same page regarding abortion. It was unrealistic to expect that a Republican president could simply ban abortions nationwide, she said, just as it is not reasonable to think a Democrat commander-in-chief could wipe away all state-based restrictions. 

The chair of the Republican National Committee is more optimistic about the chances of a federal abortion ban. In April, Ronna McDaniel called on 2024 Republican presidential hopefuls to take on abortion “head-on”. She GOP candidates in the 2022 midterm elections avoided the issue, and she thinks that led to the party’s mediocre electoral results

In 2023, Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina put forward a bill that would have capped abortions nationwide at the 15th week of pregnancy. Both liberals and conservatives chided him for the bill, which went nowhere. Graham responded by saying his proposal was in line with the consensus in most European countries, which allow abortion during the first trimester (12 weeks) of pregnancy.

Abortion has long been one of the most emotionally and politically charged topics in American political and dinner-table conversation. But it has never been as heated as it became in late 2022 after the Supreme Court overturned that court’s earlier 1973 decision Roe vs Wade. 

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