July 1, 2022

"We have to codify Roe v. Wade in the law, and the way to do that is to make sure the Congress votes to do that. And if the filibuster gets in the way, it’s like voting rights, we provide an exception for this, or an exception to the filibuster for this action."

Said President Biden, quoted in "Biden, Chiding Court, Endorses Ending Filibuster to Codify Abortion Rights/The president called the Supreme Court’s decision overturning Roe v. Wade 'destabilizing' and said Congress needed to act to codify it into law" (NYT).
It was only the second time Mr. Biden has urged Congress to scrap its rules on the filibuster. In January, he called on lawmakers to make an exception to pass legislation to add voting rights protections. Speaking at a news conference in Madrid... Mr. Biden lamented the impact of the court’s decision on a woman’s right to have an abortion, calling Roe a “critical, critical piece.”

A critical, critical piece of what? I'm sure he left it hanging. The NYT would not edit him into less articulateness. Here's the full statement at the White House website: "Remarks by President Biden in Press Conference/Madrid, Spain."

Ah! An entire press conference. Interestingly, Biden had already used the phrase "critical, critical." Earlier in the press conference, a NYT reporter asked him "How long is it fair to expect American drivers and drivers around the world to pay that premium for this war?" He said:

As long as it takes so Russia cannot, in fact, defeat Ukraine and move beyond Ukraine. This is a critical, critical position for the world....

Later in the press conference, he was asked "What further specific executive actions are you considering in response to the Roe ruling?" He said:

I’ll be happy to go in detail with you on that, on the — I’m having a meeting with a group of governors when I get home on Friday. And I’ll have announcements to make then. But the first and foremost thing we should do is make it clear how outrageous this decision was and how much it impacts not just on a woman’s right to choose — which is a critical, critical piece — and on privacy generally. On privacy generally.

I think he was trying to say "a critical, critical piece of the right of privacy." 

To continue with the text:

And so I’m going to be talking to — to the governors as to what actions they think I should be taking as well. And — but the bi- — most important thing to be clear about is we have to change — I believe we have to codify Roe v. Wade into law. And the way to do that is to make sure that Congress votes to do that. And if the filibuster gets in the way — it’s like voting rights — it should be we provide an exception for this — the exce- — the — require an exception to the filibuster for this action to deal with the Supreme Court decision.

At that point, Kelly O’Donnell observed that he "just made some news saying you would support changing the filibuster rules," but instead of pursuing any details, asked: "What is your sense today about the integrity and the impartiality of the Supreme Court? Should Americans have confidence in the Court as an institution? And your views on abortion have evolved in your public life. Are you the best messenger to carry this forward when Democrats — many of them, many progressives — want you to do more?"

The official transcript tells us the President laughs. Like Nixon of old, he asserts "I am the President":
(Laughs.) Yeah, I am. I’m the President of the United States of America. (Laughter.) That makes me the best messenger....  And so I’m the only President they got, and I feel extremely strongly that I’m going to do everything in my power which I legally can do in terms of executive orders, as well as push the Congress and the public.
It seems obvious to me that he knows a lot of would-be Democratic voters are critical — critical, critical — of his relatively weak response to the death of Roe. He needs to emote: I feel extremely strongly....

But is there much chance of voting the filibuster out of the way? Back to the NYT article:
[T]he president and his allies in the Senate have so far failed to rally enough support to make such exceptions to the filibuster. Among those who have expressed staunch opposition are two moderate Democratic senators: Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Joe Manchin III of West Virginia. Both senators condemned the court’s ruling when it was handed down last Friday and said they would support legislation to put Roe v. Wade’s protections into law. But Ms. Sinema has balked at undoing the filibuster threshold to accomplish that....

ADDED: As for Joe Manchin... is he really in favor of abortion rights? In early May, after the leak of the draft opinion, Vanity Fair published "JOE MANCHIN VOTES AGAINST PROTECTING ABORTION RIGHTS DESPITE CLAIMING TO SUPPORT ABORTION RIGHTS/Senate Democrats' attempt to codify Roe v. Wade into federal law failed Wednesday with Manchin as the lone Democrat to join every Republican to tank the bill."

65 comments:

Humperdink said...

Exceptions to the filibuster mean no filibuster. What a dolt we have for a leader.

wendybar said...

Then they will cry when Republicans take over and use the same tactics as they do?? Harry Reid agrees.

Breezy said...

Abortion laws are not in the US Congress’s domain, as we have just been told. How can there be a codification of Roe by the US Congress? It’ll just be challenged and struck down. Why is this even being discussed as a legit pathway?

10th Amendment:
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

SDaly said...

I'd love to see the Democrats try to "codify Roe". Are they going to get enough votes in the House or Senate to allow for unrestricted abortion up until the moment of birth? Or are they going to have to reach some compromise on a less extreme version, which would tear their caucus apart and demonstrate how extreme some of the state laws have become.

Sebastian said...

"We have to codify Roe v. Wade in the law"

What does it mean to "codify Roe"? For example, how can Congress declare that abortion is a constitutional right?

Do progs really want to codify Roe? In blue states, they could do better than Blackmun's trimester scheme and authorize baby killing after viability, until and even after birth. Just say it's up to women--father, baby, and state interests be damned.

Bob Boyd said...

As long as it takes so Russia cannot, in fact, defeat Ukraine and move beyond Ukraine.

So we're back to the domino theory?

rhhardin said...

It would help the democrats retain congress to have such a law depend on their presence. It's the same effect that now will happen now at the state level though.

Mr Wibble said...

There's not much that they can do. What, exactly would codification include? Declaring that abortion must be legal in all 50 states? Sure, give SCOTUS another opportunity to slap you down. They could try to tie Federal funding to abortion access, but that's can of worms they really don't want to open, and I think that any Dem with two brain cells can understand why.

mikee said...

What part of the Dobbs decision did Biden's handlers fail to read? All of it, apparently. The issue is reserved to the states, not the Supremes, and not the Congress. Heck, not even the EPA gets to mess with it, after yesterday.

Howard said...

They are going to need some Republicans for to break the filibuster logjam.

gilbar said...

so, they Only want to get rid of the filibuster; for things that They Want to Pass?
no wait!
Want to get rid of the filibuster; for things they think are Critical, Critical.. for them to Pass?

Owen said...

We are watching the USS Biden, pride of the fleet, take six Long Lance torpedoes amidships and lose her engines, steering and fire control. Fires are spreading to the main magazines and a keel-shattering explosion will follow. The press meanwhile reports on the charming choices of deck paint and cabin decoration.

Christopher B said...

"Codify Roe" has the stink of "Ultra-MAGA" all over it. This is what the Democrats did for the two months since the leak of Alito's draft opinion, run focus groups to figure out how to turn their opposition to Dobbs into a fund-raising letter.

pro-tip .. anything your Congress can codify the next Congress can un-codify.

Mike Sylwester said...

Biden sure does not want abortion laws to be made by the state legislatures.

I would challenge him to name one criminal law that should be made by a state legislature instead of by the US Congress.

Beasts of England said...

'And if the filibuster gets in the way — it’s like voting rights — it should be we provide an exception for this — the exce- — the — require an exception to the filibuster for this action to deal with the Supreme Court decision.'

And if we can't get rid of the filibuster we'll just pack the court! Norms restored and all that jazz...

campy said...

"... a lot of would-be Democratic voters are critical — critical, critical — of his relatively weak response to the death of Roe. He needs to emote: I feel extremely strongly...."

Message: I care.

RideSpaceMountain said...

"Critical piece of what?"

Critical piece of cake
Critical piece or pie
Sniffing the underage girlies
The leg hairs on your thigh

RoseAnne said...

Speaking of Venn Diagrams:

If you wanted to know how many people really care about the Roe V. Wade decision, you could make a Venn Diagram.

If you start with all the people in the US (technically the world, but you have to start somewhere).

Then you go through a list of questions:

What would they be? What order should they be considered in?

I would be inclined to start with those who technically can become pregnant, but others would include all of their allies. But then you would have to get into who is truly allied with those who can become pregnant and who simply wants abortion because it allows them to escape responsibility for a pregnancy they helped to create. If people only care as long as it applies to them, are they truly allies?

I think the actual result would be much smaller than the media and some politicians would like us to believe. Which would then cause the question: Is it worth blowing up the filibuster for to try and codify it?

Lem said...

What would codification into law mean, exactly, for a woman somewhere in a state like Wisconsin where it’s ilegal to abort a child?

Mike Sylwester said...

Democrat senators defending the filibuster when Republicans had the majority in the Senate

Wince said...

Other than enforcing a right of interstate travel (or attempting to immunize those that do) for purposes of obtaining an abortion, what constitutional basis does the federal government have for usurping the police power of the states to regulate medical procedures in those states?

Interstate commerce? 14th Amendment, sec 5 enforcement? Biden was behind the Violence Against Women Act provisions, which had claimed these constitutional predicates, when VAWA was struck down in major part by SCOTUS.

Denying federal funding to states that don't submit?

Seems like the goal is to muck things up to placate the left and keep the issue alive at the federal level (and maybe to settle an old score with SCOTUS).

Temujin said...

Journalism. Let's ask the President with the lowest approval rating in history, holding the lowest consumer confidence level in history, his opinion on the integrity and the impartiality of the Supreme Court, and if Americans have confidence in the Court as an institution. No one in America cares a whit about what Joe Biden thinks about the Court.

The other thing that the Democrats are considering as they give lip service to those angry about the decision, is that if they blow past the fillibuster, as a party, they are finished. They may be anyway- at least for a few years- given the current trends. But if they blow up Senate rules just before they get tossed out, in order to reinstate something that is very clearly not a national slam dunk, they will be finished.

They know this. So I expect they will talk loudly about it, but will not blow up the filibuster. The other end of it is if they blow it up, then step back and watch the Republicans take over both houses in 2022, then the White House in 2024? Well, full steam ahead for the Repbulicans come 2024. And there will be nothing to hold them back.

Mike Sylwester said...

Senator Barack Obama defending the filibuster in 2005, when the Senate had a Republican majority

Buckwheathikes said...

"What part of the Dobbs decision did Biden's handlers fail to read? All of it, apparently. The issue is reserved to the states, not the Supremes, and not the Congress. Heck, not even the EPA gets to mess with it, after yesterday."

You forgot that, per Bruen, we can all carry our guns concealed now, you know, just in case that route should be necessary to security the blessings of liberty for ourselves and our posterity.

Sally327 said...

As for Joe Manchin... is he really in favor of abortion rights?

Or, possibly more important, are the citizens of West Virginia really in favor of abortion rights? If so, the West Virginia legislature can now "codify Roe" and be done with it.

David Begley said...

The federal government has no authority or jurisdiction to regulate the practice of medicine. That is reserved to the states. The Commerce Clause doesn’t help the Dems.

Bob Boyd said...

As we discussed in a recent post, the Dems didn't really want to pass a bill before. They put in poison pills like forcing Catholic hospitals to perform abortions.
I don't think the Dems really thought the court would ever overturn Roe and that both parties would be able to keep using it to drive fund-raising and voter turnout forever. I think the court decision took a lot of people by surprise.
Maybe now they'll come up with a bill all their party members and their RINO allies can vote for. If they do, it won't be because they care about women. It will be because they think doing so will drive fund-raising and voter turnout. Maybe they think not passing such a bill will be a better driver.

What politicians care about in order of importance:
1) Staying in office
2) Keeping their party in the majority
3) There is no #3 It jumps straight to #17
17) What's for lunch?

Mark said...

Can we dispense now with the oft-repeated canard that "no one is pro-abortion."

Joe Biden is pro-abortion. Now rabidly so.

MikeR said...

Florida just passed a law allowing abortion until 15 weeks. Congress could do the same.

MikeR said...

Florida just passed a law allowing abortion until 15 weeks. Congress could do the same.

Gabriel said...

The filibuster is already a fake rule, in that at any time for any reason a simple majority vote can set it (or any other Senate rule) aside, once or as many times as they wish (see Senate Rule XX).

They do this more often than you see in the news; only when it's on an issue important to Democrats does it become "nuking the filibuster". But when Mitch McConnell joined the Dems against his own party's filibuster to help the Dems to raise the debt ceiling in 2021, it was just a procedural maneuver and not "nuking the filibuster".

Every time John McCain or Krysten Sinema or whoever is the final dramatic vote against cloture, this is pure theater.

The Senate can do anything at any time by simple numerical majority, which means 50 Dems plus the Vice President if need be. If they allow a filibuster to stand, it's because they don't really have 50 or don't really want to pass whatever it is. See the Republicans and McCain on Obamacare, or anything that Manchin or Sinema was opposed to. They let one person be the public face and take all the blame so that the others don't have to be exposed to their supporters. It's theater and high time we stopped falling for it.

Kevin said...

Codify Roe?

Sounds fishy.

Mark said...

Are they going to get enough votes in the House or Senate to allow for unrestricted abortion up until the moment of birth?

The House bill already passed last year.

The bill cites as authority: "the powers of Congress under the commerce clause of section 8 of article I of the Constitution of the United States, its powers under section 5 of the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States to enforce the provisions of section 1 of the Fourteenth Amendment, and its powers under the necessary and proper clause of section 8 of article I of the Constitution of the United States."

https://www.congress.gov/bill/117th-congress/house-bill/3755

Hunter Biden's tax payer funded Hooker said...

As soon as the corrupt Pelosi-Globalist billionaire left fix the vote system so only D's win - which is coming.... all of this is empty posturing.

A tucker that's worth watching.

gilbar said...

Here's numbers from the latest Economist/YouGov poll, it included a number of questions on abortion and was conducted entirely after the Supreme Court’s recent Dobbs decision was announced.

On the subject of abortion, at what point in a pregnancy do you think abortions should be banned?
Abortion should never be banned 28%
Banned after six months (the second trimester) 7%
Banned after 15 weeks 12%
Banned after three months (the first trimester) 16%
Banned after six weeks (when a fetal heartbeat can be detected) 18%
Banned after conception (always banned) 20%

That (by my math) is 54% (16+18+20) say Abortion SHOULD BE BANNED after the 1st trimester (13 weeks?)
And that is 66% (12+16+18+20) say Abortion SHOULD BE BANNED after 15 weeks.
A Grand Total of 28% agree with the current Democrat position (Abortion is something to brag about)
(If my math is right).. A MAJORITY of DEMOCRATS DISAGREE with the current democrat position!
GO DEMOCRATS!!!! VACUUM UP THOSE KIDS!!!

Eleanor said...

There are three groups in the US over abortion. There's the extreme on the right-to-life group side who want abortion completely illegal. There's the extreme on the pro-abortion side who want to be able to kill a perfectly healthy baby as it's making its way through the birth canal. They've been fighting each other for over 50 years. Long before Roe was decided. Since neither of those groups will even consider compromise, most of the rest of us have decided trying to resolve it is futile. Sending the decision to the states where the moral and cultural norms are more homogeneous is the best way to handle it. One side appears to be more willing to keep their noses out of another state's business than the other, though.

AlbertAnonymous said...

We must have comprehensive abortion reform. Yeah that’s it. A big package of garbage they’ll all vote for though no one will know what’s in it. And once again they’ll prove their Expert Executiveness to us peons.

Fuck ‘em all

Mike (MJB Wolf) said...

There’s no place for codifying Roe into statute. If it didn’t fit under the right to privacy where can it exist in Federal law? This is a fool’s errand. Worse, the only “codifying” in play is that hideous WHPA, which is so radical Democrats could not pass it and it bears little resemblance to Roe. Is packing the court a reasonable response or another distraction from the Biden-Harris dumpster fire of bad news?

traditionalguy said...

Fifty years of baby murders being swept under the rug of a fake unconstitutional to stop them label
must now either be supported or denied in a negotiated process in 50 State legislatures. The adults are back.

n.n said...

The wicked solution (e.g. planned parenthood, planned parent/hood), or human rites performed for social, redistributive, clinical, and fair weather causes, are imperative to keep women, and men, affordable, available, and taxable.

Men, women, and "our Posterity" are from Earth. Feminists are from Venus. Masculinists are from Mars. Social progressives are from Uranus.

gspencer said...

“Let us face reality. The framers [of the Constitution] have simply been too shrewd for us. They have outwitted us. They designed separate institutions that cannot be unified by mechanical linkages frail bridges(or) tinkering. If we are to turn the founders upside down we must directly confront the Constitutional structure they erected.”

James MacGregor Burns in The Power to Lead. Burns was a part of the power elite of his day.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_MacGregor_Burns

gspencer said...

“Let us face reality. The framers [of the Constitution] have simply been too shrewd for us. They have outwitted us. They designed separate institutions that cannot be unified by mechanical linkages frail bridges(or) tinkering. If we are to turn the founders upside down we must directly confront the Constitutional structure they erected.”

James MacGregor Burns in The Power to Lead. Burns was a part of the power elite of his day.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_MacGregor_Burns

Mark said...

What would codification into law mean, exactly, for a woman somewhere in a state like Wisconsin where it’s ilegal to abort a child?

Correction: It is NOT illegal under Wisconsin law for a woman to abort a child. It is illegal for an abortionist to abort a child. The mother is not legally liable.

Mark said...

Florida just passed a law allowing abortion until 15 weeks.

Did they?? Did they really?

Or did they just pass a law disallowing abortion after 15 weeks.

There is a HUGE difference there.

Mark said...

That the state should not be in the business of approving the killing of ANY innocent human life with impunity is hardly "extreme."

Original Mike said...

So, we have to provide a filibuster exception, but only for the really important issues. That makes sense …

Dave Begley said...

Ann Althouse recently retired as one of the top constitutional law professors in the entire country. I'd sure like to hear her views on whether the federal government can constitutionally enact a nationwide abortion law.

What are the limits of the commerce clause? Can the federal government regulate the medical profession?

Mark said...

Either the entity in the womb is a living human being at 12 weeks, at 8 weeks, at 4 weeks, etc., or she is not.

To refuse to acknowledge that -- and at this point since it has been pointed out constantly, it can only be an intentional refusal -- is to basically be pro-Roe. It is to say that Harry Blackmun was right after all.

The "extreme" position is the one that says that there are two classes of humanity, one of which can be slaughtered with impunity.

n.n said...

The Pro-Choice ethical religion assumes that women, female by Nature, possess neither dignity nor agency. Demos-cracy is aborted at the twilight fringe. Wicked.

Roe's regrets. Ruth's remorse. Human rites.

Mark said...

Nobody likes a suck-up.

JAORE said...

Drop the filibuster just this time for just this issue.

Otherwise known as the "Just the Tip" rule.

Iman said...

The Democrats will use this as a cudgel/issue for the rest of their unnatural lives…

wendybar said...

MikeR said...
Florida just passed a law allowing abortion until 15 weeks. Congress could do the same.

7/1/22, 7:45 AM

Except, as usual, a Progressive Judge put a temporary hold on it. https://www.tampabay.com/news/florida-politics/2022/07/01/floridas-15-week-abortion-ban-took-effect-today-heres-what-to-know/

PigHelmet said...

Joe Manchin’s old man, A. James Manchin, was the Secretary of State for West Virginia back in the days when WV was a Democratic stronghold. Here’s an entertaining if slightly painful 4-minute clip of A. James from the TV show REAL PEOPLE: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ghNWhOX8_rM

Make of it what you will.

Original Mike said...

"Either the entity in the womb is a living human being at 12 weeks, at 8 weeks, at 4 weeks, etc., or she is not."

Schrödinger's cat.

Mark said...

Florida just passed a law allowing abortion until 15 weeks.

Except, as usual, a Progressive Judge put a temporary hold on it.

Great. Then that means that Florida does not allow abortion until 15 weeks.

Zavier Onasses said...

"It was only the second time Mr. Biden has urged Congress to scrap its rules on the filibuster."

So - getting to be a habit? Soon there may be just no rules at all.

Michael K said...

I don't think the Dems really thought the court would ever overturn Roe and that both parties would be able to keep using it to drive fund-raising and voter turnout forever. I think the court decision took a lot of people by surprise.

I agree and the public support will vary a lot now. California and New York are all in for infanticide. Ditto Illinois and Mass.

It will be interesting to see the debates. Personally, I think a lot of states will settle around 15 weeks. If neonatology continues to improve, that might shift back to 9 weeks or so.

stlcdr said...

Every time politicians talk about the filibuster rules, I have to remind myself what it is - they seem to talk as if it’s an evil thing that must be banished. If you can’t get 60 votes to move on, then it’s likely you have a bad law.

The increase in ‘use’ of the filibuster over the past several decades tells us that there is a lot of partisan legislation going on - none of it to the benefit of the people.

Static Ping said...

Forget it. He's an extremist, senile idiot. If he wasn't President, he would be one step up from the drug addict wearing underwear on his head as he screamed at passer-bys.

If he hadn't enriched himself with his rampant corruption, he would be in an elderly care facility, assuming his children were not trying to find someone who would take him after being kicked out of a half dozen prior homes for assaulting the other residents.

Welcome the American Caligula.

Jupiter said...

Put a sock in it.

Lurker21 said...

I’m the only President they got

That also sounds like Nixon, but apparently, it was Lyndon Johnson: "I'm the only president you've got."

You don't talk like that if you are a president that people actually want.

Bunkypotatohead said...

You need to stop pretending the guy gives any thought to what comes out of his mouth.
He's like a defective cliche generator, spouting buzzwords he heard in his daily meeting, intermingled with half forgotten arguments from his heyday in the senate.
His current press secretary is actually a pretty good representative of the old geezer.

h said...

Washington Post commenters are insistent that the public supports abortion rights overwhelmingly. (This is one of the things that infuriates them about Dobbs is that it is "anti-democratic" in this respect.) But why (in, say Wisconsin) aren't they working harder to pass a state level law that enacts the legality of abortion? I suspect it is because supporters of abortion rights know full well that the "popularity" of abortion comes with severe restrictions -- that they could pass a bill to make it legal up some number of months or weeks of pregnancy, but illegal thereafter.

Greg The Class Traitor said...

but I just wanted to suggest that it would be sensible for Congress to create a statutory right to abortion in the first 10 weeks, leaving the rest of the legislative choice to the states.

It's not a Federal issue, and any such law should be immediately enjoined, and finally struck down.

But if the Democrats want to nuke the filibuster isn order to pass a law that will never go into effect, I'm all in favor of that