Trump declines to say whether he supports a national abortion ban

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Former President Donald Trump said the federal government should play a "significant role" in opposing abortion, but again did not elaborate on specifics about the restrictions he would support nationally if he wins the White House again.

Trump spoke out to a group of influential evangelicals Saturday on the anniversary of the Supreme Court's ruling that struck down the constitutional right to abortion, contrasting with Mike Pence, his former vice president and challenger for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination.

The day before, Pence at the same conference challenged the Republican nomination hopefuls to support a national ban on abortion at least 15 weeks pregnant.

Trump, who is leading in the polls, has been reluctant to pass a national ban, hinting that restrictions should be up to the states.

He even claimed that pushing for increased abortion restrictions would be a political disadvantage to Republicans despite the fact that the three justices he appointed to the Supreme Court make up the majority that voted to overturn Roe v. Wade last year.

In his address to the annual conference of the Faith and Freedom Coalition, Trump refrained from giving a forceful response, as has been his style. He said he believes that "the greatest progress is being made in the states, where everyone wanted it to happen."

“One of the reasons they wanted the reversal of Roe v. Wade,” he said, “is for the decision to go back to the states where many people feel strongly that the most pro-life gains are being made.”

But the former president assured: "There, of course, the federal government continues to play a vital role in the protection of future life":

Trump said he supports three waivers to abortion restrictions: in cases of rape and incest or when the life of the mother is in danger.

The former president took credit for overturning the landmark ruling, saying he was "proud to be the most pro-life president in American history."

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