law of the land

Donald Trump says marriage equality is ‘settled’ law. So why isn’t abortion?

60 Minutes

In a wide-ranging interview on Sunday’s 60 Minutes, President-elect Donald Trump turned heads when he said that marriage equality is “already settled” law in this country, and that he would not make any attempts to overturn it.

Which is why it’s odd that he also seemed so eager to gut another, far-more-settled law of the land: women’s right to an abortion.

When interviewer Lesley Stahl asked Trump if he supports marriage equality, Trump responded the issue is “irrelevant because it was already settled. It’s law. It was settled in the Supreme Court. I mean it’s done…And, I’m fine with that.”

Although that’s far from a resounding expression of support for the rights of LGBTQ people, viewers immediately seized on Trump’s remark as a glimmer of hope amid relentless news about how awful this administration is shaping up to be–despite the fact that the president-elect was only saying marriage equality is settled law.

So it was deeply concerning to hear Trump dance around the question of whether he will nominate Supreme Court justices who would look to overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 landmark case that made abortion legal in the U.S.

“Having to do with abortion, if it ever were overturned, it would go back to the states,” Trump said about Roe, while making clear that the judges he appoints “will be pro-life.” After Stahl followed up to ask about the women whose abortion rights would be restricted, Trump offered up that perhaps they would “have to go to another state” to get an abortion.

It remains difficult to guess what Trump will do in office, particularly on the issue of abortion, one where he’s frequently changed his political stance. Trump, who identifies as anti-abortion, will have the ability to significantly shape the abortion rights of entire generations to come with his Supreme Court pick, but for now, it’s all wait and see.

You can watch the full interview via CBS News.