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TUCSON, Arizona (LifeSiteNews) — Vice President Kamala Harris visited Arizona on Friday to highlight the state’s newly enforceable abortion ban as part of Democrats’ 2024 election campaign despite a number of their Republican opponents running away from the law.

“We all must understand who is to blame. Former President Donald Trump did this,” Harris, who opposes any limits on abortion, told the crowd at a campaign event, USA Today reported. “Donald Trump is the architect of this health care crisis.”

“The overturning of Roe (v. Wade) was without any question a seismic event, and this ban here in Arizona is one of the biggest aftershocks yet,” she continued. “It has demonstrated, once and for all, that overturning Roe was just the opening act of a larger strategy to take women’s rights and freedoms, part of a full-on attack, state by state, on reproductive freedom.”

“As much harm as he has already caused, a second Trump term would be even worse,” Harris went on. “We all know if Donald Trump gets the chance, he will sign a national abortion ban. And how do we know? Just look at his record (…) Here’s what a second Trump term looks like: More bans, more suffering and less freedom. Just like he did in Arizona, he basically wants to take America back to the 1800s. But we are not going to let that happen.”

President Joe Biden is banking heavily on pro-abortion fear to drive turnout for his reelection this fall, chiefly by tying Trump to various pro-life laws that have been allowed to take effect over the past two years thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court overturning Roe in June 2022. But while Trump continues to take credit for filling the three SCOTUS vacancies that opened during his term with justices who went on to overturn Roe, he has spent most of the race so far attempting to distance himself from the fruits of that victory.

After months of criticizing heartbeat laws and expressing interest in a national abortion compromise, Trump ultimately settled last Monday on leaving future abortion policy to the states, going so far as to confirm he would not sign an abortion ban that reached his desk if elected. 

Alongside such comments, he came out against a near-total abortion ban dating back to 1864 which the Arizona Supreme Court ruled last week can be enforced. He agreed with a reporter that the law went “too far” and predicted it would soon be “straightened out,” later writing on his personal social network Truth Social that the law was “inappropriate” and urging the legislature to “remedy” it “as fast as possible.”

Trump’s initial comments about federal law initially found some conservative defenders who attempted to frame them as a matter of strategic political necessity, but inspired stronger pro-life criticism once his Arizona follow-up came. Some prominent GOP figures sided with him against the Grand Canyon State’s ban, including MAGA Senate candidate Kari Lake and Fox News primetime host Sean Hannity

Pro-life voters represent a significant portion of the Republican coalition, and Democrats’ insistence that Trump remains a stealth abortion foe despite his latest comments could backfire on them by convincing disgruntled pro-lifers to stay with him.

Polls currently have Trump and Biden in a popular vote dead heat with a distinct lead for Trump in the Electoral College, although voters also say that convictions in Trump’s various ongoing legal battles would make them less likely to support him. However, serious concern among Democrats over Biden’s age and mental health, and deep dissatisfaction with his job performance, give the current president comparable electoral challenges.

Third-party candidate Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. could be a wild card, as he has qualities that appeal to each major candidate’s base. At the moment, the aforementioned polls show Trump’s lead persisting even with Kennedy factored in, but given how close many are predicting the election to be, concern persists that even small defections could impact the outcome. Kennedy recently confirmed that, like Biden, he would also sign legislation codifying a nationwide “right” to abortion.