Florida Governor Accuses Trump of Going “Soft” on Abortion
Florida governor Ron DeSantis has accused his 2024 presidential rival Donald Trump of going “soft” on the issue of abortion after the former president said last month that some believed it was “too harsh.”
The Republican governor made the comments during an interview with Christian Broadcasting Network News’ David Brody set to air on the 700 Club on June 16.
Asked by host Brody if he feels Trump is “going soft on abortion a little bit,” DeSantis responded, “I think so.”
“I was really surprised, because he’s a Florida resident,” DeSantis said. “And I thought he would compliment the fact that we were able to do the heartbeat bill, which pro-lifers have wanted for a long time. He never complimented, never said anything about it. Then he was asked about it and he said it was ‘harsh.’”
“These are children with detectable heartbeats,” DeSantis added.
DeSantis signed the six-week ban on abortion, or the Heartbeat Protection Act, into law in April, although whether or not it will take effect depends on how the state supreme court rules in a challenge to the current 15-week ban in place, which the governor signed into law in 2022.
Heartbeat Bill Explained
In those cases, a written determination must be made by two physicians certifying, in reasonable medical judgment, that the termination of the pregnancy is necessary.
Women are also exempted from the ban if their pregnancy is not yet in the third trimester and the unborn child has a “fatal fetal abnormality.”
Such an abnormality must be certified in writing by two physicians.
Other exceptions are included for pregnancies caused by rape, incest, or human trafficking, so long as the woman is less than 15 weeks.
“At the time the woman schedules or arrives for her appointment to obtain the abortion, she must provide a copy of a restraining order, police report, medical record, or other court order or documentation providing evidence that she is obtaining the termination of pregnancy because she is a victim of rape, incest, or human trafficking,” the bill states.
It will also make it a third-degree felony for any person who “willfully performs, or actively participates” in, a termination of pregnancy in violation of the legislation and prohibits state funds from being used to help a woman get an abortion in another state.
Shortly after DeSantis signed the bill, Trump said in a May interview with The Messenger that he believed many pro-life activists found the six-week ban on abortion “too harsh.”
‘Harsh’ Abortion Bill
“He has to do what he has to do,” Trump said of Florida’s abortion restrictions. “If you look at what DeSantis did, a lot of people don’t even know if he knew what he was doing. But he signed six weeks, and many people within the pro-life movement feel that that was too harsh.”
The former president did not explicitly state whether he himself believed the six-week ban to be too harsh. Asked if he would sign a six-week abortion ban, Trump explained that he was “looking at all options.”
Discussing Trump’s comments about abortion further with Christian Broadcasting Network News, DeSantis explained, “While I appreciate what the former president has
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