Jul 3, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Democrats need to give "some good ideas" on ensuring abortion rights: Becerra

Xavier Becerra

Xavier Becerra speaks during a news conference on June 28. Photo: Amanda Andrade-Rhoades/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra told NBC's "Meet the Press" Sunday that Democrats criticizing the Biden administration's strategy to ensure abortion rights ought to "give us some good ideas."

Driving the news: In the wake of the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, some progressives have called for the Biden administration to build abortion facilities on federal lands located in red states — a move the administration has made clear it is not pursuing.

The big picture: "I also would ask them to please pass a law. They have it in their power, if they can find the votes to actually codify the Roe decision, which is what we need more than anything else," Becerra added when asked by host Chuck Todd about Democrats who believe the administration is "not fighting hard enough" for abortion rights.

  • Becerra noted that not all ideas for protecting abortion access can be put into practice.
  • Becerra stressed that while the administration intends to do everything in its power to protect abortion access, it is paramount that it stays "within the confines of the law."

What they're saying: "We will find what we can and do as much as we can. But when you are stripped of a right, as the Supreme Court has just done to every woman of childbearing age, it is tough to overcome," he said.

  • "We will continue to find every avenue possible to make sure women have access to the care that they need, including abortion care."
  • President Biden "has asked us to seek as aggressive a strategy as we can. But unlike the previous administration, we do intend to respect the law," Becerra said.
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