RFK Jr walks back support for ‘full-term abortion’ while Biden camp portrays president as moderate

In April, independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. (RFK Jr) announced his plan to “make it easier for women to choose life.” Then on May 10, he said he opposes any restrictions on abortion, “even if it’s full term.” After this news spread far and wide, he has decided to retract that statement.

The Biden campaign, when asked for its reaction to RFK Jr.’s original statements, told Fox News that President Biden wants to return to Roe v. Wade. “No, the president doesn’t support full-term abortions, as he’s made clear many times. He thinks Roe got it right,” senior campaign spokesperson Lauren Hitt said, seemingly attempting to portray Biden as more reasonable on the issue of killing preborn children.

And yet, the Democratic National Committee followed up with a statement of its own that seemed to paint RFK Jr. as not extreme enough when it comes to abortion, saying he “can’t be trusted to stand up for reproductive freedom,” according to Fox.

It is important to note what the Biden campaign isn’t saying: that Roe v. Wade and its partner decision, Doe v. Bolton, legalized abortion not just through the first trimester but throughout pregnancy. Doe specified that a child could be killed at any time during pregnancy for “health” reasons, which even included reasons of financial and “familial” health.

In other words, that very large loophole essentially allowed for unrestricted abortion for any given “health” reason.

RFK Jr’s ‘personally pro-life’ position

“I have been probably one of the leading, arguably one of the leading people in this country for medical freedom and for bodily autonomy,” Kennedy said on The Sage Steele Show on May 10. “I think with abortion, every abortion is a tragedy. Many of them leave permanent trauma on the woman. But I think, ultimately, I don’t trust government to have jurisdiction over people’s bodies. I think we need to leave it to the woman, her pastor and to, you know, her spiritual advisors or physician, whatever, to make those decisions.”

In reality, the government does, to some extent, exercise jurisdiction over people’s bodies when they pass laws against things like rape, homicide, or even pass measures like seat belt laws. Abortion is the homicide of an undelivered human being; our society prosecutes an assailant for the death of a preborn child unless the perpetrator is that child’s own mother. Our society holds that in one case, the child has value (if wanted by his mother), yet in the other case, the child has no value (because he is unwanted by his mother).

Our society is highly inconsistent in these matters, when it labels the killing of a preborn child as a matter of “privacy” for that child’s mother to decide — however, after that child is born, our society would not allow his family to abuse him or starve him to death without repercussions under the banner of “privacy.” Instead, we only allow a child to be legally starved of nutrients if he or she has not yet exited the womb.


He continued, “I think there’s a really, really good argument, a compelling argument, that the state has an interest in protecting a fully-formed fetus. I absolutely think that that argument is very convincing. But again, I come down to the fact that I don’t trust the state. I think we need to trust the woman and I don’t think that that’s a satisfactory outcome, because there’s always gonna be instances where bad things happen.”

This position is often referred to as “personally pro-life.” And functionally, this position serves to promote abortion. RFK Jr. believes “every abortion is a tragedy,” but doesn’t say why. Abortion, he says, can leave “permanent trauma on the woman,” but again does not say why this is the case. The pro-life position is that abortion is not only a tragedy, but an unjust violation of the human rights of a preborn human being (the right to life), and this is what makes it tragic and traumatic.

It kills human beings, whether they are “fully formed” or not.

Photo: Reddit user brazen 177 (10-week aborted baby by abortion pill)

When pressed by Steele as to whether states should be allowed to make laws regarding abortion, Kennedy said, “We shouldn’t have government involved.”

“Even if it’s full term?” questioned Steele.

“Even if it’s full term,” Kennedy replied, adding, “I think we have to leave it to the woman, not the state. I think we should do everything in our power to make sure that never happens and everything that we can do. But I think, ultimately, you know, nobody sets out to do that. And there are always some kind of extenuating circumstances that would make a mother make that kind of choice, a terrible, terrible choice which is, you know, you can’t overstate how bad that is. And I think, ultimately, we have to trust women.”


an HD ultrasound of a baby at 30 weeks. (Getty Images)

But the next day, he walked back those comments due to pressure from his campaign staff, according to CBS News. On X on May 11, Kennedy wrote, “…abortion should be legal up until a certain number of weeks, and restricted thereafter.”

False assumptions?

He continued, “I had been assuming that virtually all late-term abortions were such cases [the baby has some fatal condition], but I’ve learned that my assumption was wrong. Sometimes, women abort healthy, viable late-term fetuses. These cases of purely ‘elective’ late-term abortion are very upsetting. Once the baby is viable outside the womb, it should have rights and it deserves society’s protection.”

Indeed, even pro-abortion researchers have stated that most abortions done late in pregnancy are not because the baby is unhealthy. Live Action News has previously noted:

According to a 1988 Guttmacher study, only 2% of women sought late-term abortions because of a health problem with the baby.

A 2013 study, also published by the Guttmacher Institute, also said, “data suggest that most women seeking later terminations are not doing so for reasons of fetal anomaly or life endangerment.”

Pro-abortion researcher and (debunked) Turnaway Study author Diana Greene Foster likewise stated that according to a report from the Congressional Research Service, abortions for fetal abnormalities “make up a small minority of later abortion.”

And a 2010 paper from Julia Steinberg of the pro-abortion Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health said, “Research suggests that the overwhelming majority of women having later abortions do so for reasons other than fetal anomaly (Drey et al., 2006; Finer et al., 2005, 2006; Foster et al., 2008).”

Kennedy claimed there is “emerging consensus that abortion should be unrestricted up until a certain point” and yet it is implied that prior to so-called “viability” (which is an entirely subjective concept) any preborn child can be killed for any reason. Yet, a person’s ability to survive only in specific conditions — such as in the womb, on a ventilator, or with an oxygen tank or insulin pump — does not determine his or her value as a human being or whether or not someone else can legally kill him or her.

Confusion in the camp

Kennedy’s flip on “full term” abortion came on the heels of a social media post from his campaign advisor Angela Stanton King, who wrote, “To be completely transparent, this is the first time I’ve hear this perspective directly from Mr. Kennedy. I’ll circle back shortly.”

Then, hours before Kennedy posted his retraction, Stanton King posted a video in which she explained that “after a bunch of going back and forth, and not only by me, but also people on the campaign, we’ve all come to the agreement that late-term abortion is not something that this campaign is going to support.”

Likewise, his running mate Nicole Shanahan had her own interview with Steele, during which she said she did not know where Kennedy’s “full term” comment came from because her “understanding with Bobby’s position is that, you know, every abortion is a tragedy, is a loss of life. My understanding is that he absolutely believes in limits on abortion, and we’ve talked about this.”

This isn’t the first time Kennedy has changed his position on abortion restrictions. Last year, he told NBC News that he would support a federal ban on abortion after three months. Just hours later, his campaign released a statement saying that he does not support legislation to protect any preborn children from abortion.

The DOJ put a pro-life grandmother in jail for protesting the killing of preborn children. Please take 30-seconds to TELL CONGRESS: STOP THE DOJ FROM TARGETING PRO-LIFE AMERICANS.

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