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Trump proposes slimmed-down program that removes language on abortion and same-sex marriage
Trump proposes slimmed-down program that removes language on abortion and same-sex marriage

The 2024 Republican National Convention Platform Committee quickly adopted the platform drafted by Donald Trump and his aides during a meeting in Milwaukee on Monday, despite concerns from some anti-abortion activists that the document does not explicitly call for a constitutional amendment to grant constitutional rights to embryos or fetuses, nor does it call for a national ban on abortion.

The final vote was 84 to 18, according to a person who described the closed hearing on condition of anonymity.

The document, which includes a lengthy introduction from the perspective of likely candidate Trump, states that existing constitutional rights to a fair trial give states the power to “enact laws to protect those rights.”

“After 51 years, we have handed that power over to the states and a vote of the people,” the document, obtained by The Washington Post, states. “We will oppose late-term abortion while supporting mothers and policies that promote prenatal care, access to contraception and IVF (fertility treatments).”

The document was presented Monday to members of the Republican National Convention Committee, a group handpicked by Trump campaign leaders that includes some members who want stricter language on abortion. The 2016 program Trump used in his 2020 re-election campaign called for a constitutional amendment to affirm the constitutional rights of embryos and fetuses to a due process, as well as a national law banning abortions after about 20 weeks of pregnancy, with some exceptions.

Trump has changed his position on the issue since the Supreme Court struck down the fundamental right to the procedure earlier in pregnancy. He now argues that each state should make its own regulations, rather than calling for a constitutional amendment that would prohibit all states from allowing the procedure – a point of contention for many anti-abortion activists.

Ralph Reed, chairman of the Faith and Freedom Coalition, who had publicly warned Trump against changing the abortion language, thanked Trump in a statement for including language saying the Constitution’s Due Process Clause gives states the power to restrict abortion.

“This language has been part of the GOP platform for 40 years and reflects the views of Ronald Reagan,” Reed said. “While it is an ambitious goal, it applies to both the states and the federal government.”

The 16-page document will be discussed by the programming committee at meetings in Milwaukee before a meeting Tuesday night to vote on any changes. That meeting, which has been open to the press in the past, will be held behind closed doors. Republican National Committee members who are not on the programming committee will be allowed to attend.

The platform reflects a complete takeover of the party by Trump and reads almost like one of his campaign speeches. It officially enshrines the mass deportations of millions of illegal immigrants as the platform of the Republican Party; proposes abolishing the Department of Education; calls for “deporting pro-Hamas radicals”; building a “great iron dome” over the country; “ending the militarization of the Justice Department”; repealing the electric vehicle requirement; and “FIGHT AND PROTECT SOCIAL SECURITY AND MEDICINE WITHOUT CUTS, EVEN WITHOUT CHANGES TO THE RETIREMENT AGE.”

“We will take measures to secure our elections, including voter ID, state-of-the-art paper ballots, proof of citizenship and the ability to vote on the same day,” the program says.

The platform also shows how far the party has come on trade issues under Trump. According to the platform, the party now supports tariffs. Language from the 2016 Republican platform that supported Puerto Rico’s ability to seek statehood has also been removed from the new document.

The 2016 document was much more extensive, with 54 pages of packed text. Trump’s advisers have indicated that they wanted the new document to directly reflect Trump’s views, a break from past tradition in which Republican operatives are allowed to shape the document in consultation with the likely nominee’s campaign team, often resulting in language that differs in emphasis and detail from the candidate’s public statements.

Vincent Haley, a former deputy assistant to the president during Trump’s first term, wrote most of the document submitted Monday, according to people familiar with the process who spoke on condition of anonymity to describe private activities. Trump later reviewed and edited the document, the people said. He wrote the section headings, changed the language and expanded the list of bullet points in the introduction from 10 to 20, one of the people said.

The former president called a meeting of the platform committee on Monday, a person familiar with the meeting said.

“For decades, our politicians have sold our jobs and livelihoods to the highest bidders abroad with unfair trade deals and blind faith in the siren song of globalization. They have shielded themselves from criticism and the consequences of their own bad actions and allowed our borders to be overrun, our cities to be overrun by crime, our legal system to be weaponized, and our young people to develop a sense of hopelessness and despair. They have rejected our history and our values. Quite simply, they have done everything in their power to destroy our country,” the official platform of the Republican Party now states.

Eight anti-abortion and social conservative leaders wrote a letter to Trump on June 10 demanding that the platform include support for federal restrictions on abortion and include the following sentence: “We support a constitutional amendment protecting human life and legislation clarifying that the protections of the 14th Amendment extend to children before birth.”

The new draft platform also removes language from 2016 that condemned the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2015 decision to grant same-sex couples the right to marry. The new language does not address same-sex marriage at all. “Republicans will promote a culture that values ​​the sanctity of marriage, the blessings of childhood and the fundamental role of the family, and supports working parents,” it says instead. “We will end policies that punish families.”

The 2016 platform supported the idea that parents could request conversion therapy based on their children’s sexuality. “We support the right of parents to determine the appropriate medical treatment and therapy for their minor children,” it said.

The new program does not seek to prohibit parents from providing medical treatment to minor children, but condemns taxpayer funding for such procedures. “We will keep men out of women’s sports, ban taxpayer funding of gender reassignment surgery and prevent taxpayer-funded schools from promoting gender reassignment, reverse Biden’s radical overhaul of Title IX education regulations, and restore protections for women and girls,” the new program states.

The full section of the new abortion bill reads: “We proudly stand for family and life. We believe that the 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution guarantees that no one can be denied life or liberty without due process and that states are therefore free to enact laws to protect those rights. After 51 years, that power has been given to the states, thanks to us and a vote of the people. We will oppose late-term abortion while supporting mothers and policies that advance prenatal care, access to contraception and IVF (fertility treatments).”

By Everly