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During an appearance on CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday, Pelosi responded to criticism that Democrats should have been better prepared for the attack on abortion rights after a leaked draft opinion this month signaled the conservative-leaning Supreme Court is poised to overturn Roe v. Wade.
“Who would ever [have] suspected that a creature like Donald Trump would become president of the United States, waving a list of judges that he would appoint, therefore getting the support of the far right and appointing those anti-freedom justices to the court?” Pelosi argued.
“So this is not about long game,” she said. “We played a long game. We won Roe v. Wade a long time ago, we voted to protect it over time. We have elected a Democratic House of Representatives that is pro-choice. Again, you have the 60 vote thing in the Senate and lack of clarity on top – part of some of the Republicans who say they’re pro-choice and then voted against a woman’s right to choose.”
“But let’s not take our eye off the ball,” she continued. “The ball is this court, which is dangerous to the freedoms of a country. Beware in terms of marriage equality, beware in terms of the other aspects of it, and so, let’s not waste our time on that. The fact is, this is a dangerous court – to families, to freedom in our country, and that is why people have to mobilize.”
Pelosi invoked her Catholic faith to bolster her argument, saying a woman’s right to terminate a pregnancy lies between the woman and “her god.”
“We’re talking about a woman’s decision-making – her family, her god, her doctor, her own decision-making. So we have to fight the fight on the issue now,” she said. “I say this as a practicing, devout Catholic, five children in six years and one week. I don’t disrespect people’s views and how they want to live their lives, but I don’t think that it’s up to the Donald Trump-appointees on the court or any politicians to make that decision for women.”
In the leaked draft opinion in the case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, published by Politico on May 2, Justice Samuel Alito overturns Roe v. Wade, which strikes down state laws across the country, and allows states to again make their own laws on abortion.
In the wake of the historic leak, pro-abortion protesters have targeted the homes of Supreme Court justices, Catholic churches, and pro-life organizations across the country. A small group of protesters demonstrated in front of Pelosi’s San Francisco home last week, accusing the Democratic Party of being “complicit” in the attack on abortion rights.
Vice President Kamala Harris presided over the vote on the Women’s Health Protection Act. It needed 60 votes to advance, but died in a 51 to 49 tally with West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin joining with all 50 Republicans in voting no.
President Biden immediately condemned Republicans for blocking the abortion rights legislation at a time when “women’s constitutional rights are under unprecedented attack.” He called on voters to elect more Democrats in November, so the legislation can get passed next year.
“Republicans in Congress – not one of whom voted for this bill – have chosen to stand in the way of Americans’ rights to make the most personal decisions about their own bodies, families and lives,” Biden said in a statement. “To protect the right to choose, voters need to elect more pro-choice senators this November, and return a pro-choice majority to the House.”
Fox News’ Marisa Schultz contributed to this report.