Former Vice President Mike Pence, who has signaled he’s mulling a run for president in 2024, is pushing for states across the country to ban abortion following the Supreme Court’s ruling upending Roe v. Wade.
“Having been given this second chance for life, we must not rest and must not relent until the sanctity of life is restored to the center of American law in every state in the land,” Pence said in a statement Friday shortly after the court ruled in a Mississippi case that states could restrict abortion.
Pence has spent recent weeks visiting with friendly audiences in early voting states like Iowa and South Carolina as he weighs a potential presidential bid. Last month, he visited an anti-abortion crisis pregnancy center and spoke at the Carolina Pregnancy Center’s annual fundraising gala.
The former vice president has been a focal point in public hearings held recently by the House committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol after his life was threatened following repeated criticism from then-President Trump, who pushed him not to certify President Biden’s electoral win.
Trump, who hasn’t formally announced whether he will be on the ballot again in 2024, has been fundraising and teasing a possible third White House bid. He’s seen as the frontrunner if he does run again, though he isn’t expected to tap Pence as his running mate after the two had a falling out over the 2020 election outcome and Pence’s refusal to go along with efforts to overturn the election result.
Recent polls have had Pence trailing Trump and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) in potential GOP match-ups for 2024.
The former vice president has long been an opponent of abortion and called on the Supreme Court to overturn Roe.
“By returning the question of abortion to the states and to the people, this Supreme Court has righted an historic wrong and reaffirmed the right of the American people to govern themselves at the state level in a manner consistent with their values and aspirations,” he said Friday.
The Supreme Court’s ruling, which was anticipated after an unprecedented leak of a draft copy of the opinion in May, means that abortion is immediately banned in several states, with varying trigger laws taking place in others that will make terminating a pregnancy illegal in more states.
The 6-3 decision, rendered with all conservative justices in favor, overrides the landmark 1973 abortion ruling that guaranteed access across the country and was used repeatedly to block state restrictions.
Rather than strictly ruling on the case before them, which dealt with a 15-week abortion ban, the court specifically spelled out that it was overriding previous rulings on abortion.
“We hold that Roe and [Planned Parenthood v. Casey] must be overruled. The Constitution makes no reference to abortion, and no such right is implicitly protected by any constitutional provision,” Justice Samuel Alito wrote for the majority. “This Court cannot bring about the permanent resolution of a rancorous national controversy simply by dictating a settlement and telling the people to move on.”