By Katie Yoder
President Joe Biden, the second Catholic president in U.S. history, believes that abortion is a “woman’s right,” White House Press Secrentary Jen Psaki said on Thursday. Her comments came in response to a question about Texas’ newly-enacted abortion ban asked by EWTN News Nightly White House Correspondent Owen Jensen.
“I know you’ve never faced those choices, nor have you ever been pregnant,” Psaki told Jensen, “but for women out there who have faced those choices, this is an incredibly difficult thing.”
Beginning Sept. 1, the “Texas Heartbeat Act” bans abortions statewide after a fetal heartbeat can be detected, which can happen as early as six weeks into pregnancy. The law also enables citizens to enforce the ban through private lawsuits.
When the Supreme Court rejected an emergency request to block the law in a 5–4 decision, Biden declared a “whole-of-government” response to “ensure” abortion access in the state.
On Sept. 2, Jensen asked Psaki about Biden’s position at a White House press conference.
“Why does the president support abortion when his own Catholic faith teaches abortion is morally wrong?” he wanted to know.
Psaki said that the president believes that abortion is a “woman’s right, it’s a woman’s body, and it’s her choice.”
In a follow-up question, Jensen asked, “Who does he believe, then, should look out for the unborn child?”
According to Psaki, Biden “believes that it’s up to a woman to make those decisions and up to a woman to make those decisions with her doctor.”
She added, “The president believes their right should be respected.”
The Catechism of the Catholic Church, which summarizes Church teaching, recognizes the inherent dignity and worth of the unborn human person and considers abortion a “crime against human life.”
“Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception,” the catechism reads. “From the first moment of his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person – among which is the inviolable right of every innocent being to life.”