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Biden on Supreme Court leak: Roe should not be overturned, ‘A woman’s right to choose is fundamental’

President Biden on Tuesday reacted to the leaked draft of the Supreme Court’s opinion striking down Roe v. Wade, saying he believes that “a woman’s right to choose is fundamental,” and arguing that “basic fairness and the stability of our law demand that it not be overturned,” while saying any potential final decision on the case by the high court should push voters “to elect pro-choice officials” during November’s midterm elections.

The high court is poised to overturn Roe v. Wade, according to a draft opinion written by Justice Samuel Alito, in an unprecedented and stunning leak from the high court.

“We do not know whether this draft is genuine, or whether it reflects the final decision of the Court,” the president said Tuesday morning, before the Supreme Court confirmed the authenticity of the draft. “With that critical caveat, I want to be clear on three points about the cases before the Supreme Court.” 

SUPREME COURT SET TO OVERTURN ROE V. WADE, LEAKED DRAFT OPINION SHOWS: REPORT

“First, my administration argued strongly before the Court in defense of Roe v. Wade. We said that Roe is based on ‘a long line of precedent recognizing ‘the Fourteenth Amendment’s concept of personal liberty’… against government interference with intensely personal decisions,'” Biden said. 

President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the debt ceiling during an event in the State Dining Room of the White House, Monday, Oct. 4 in Washington. A California man was arrested in Iowa last week as he was traveling to Washington D.C., after he was found with a "hit list" featuring Biden, former presidents and Dr. Anthony Fauci.

President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the debt ceiling during an event in the State Dining Room of the White House, Monday, Oct. 4 in Washington. A California man was arrested in Iowa last week as he was traveling to Washington D.C., after he was found with a "hit list" featuring Biden, former presidents and Dr. Anthony Fauci.
(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

“I believe that a woman’s right to choose is fundamental, Roe has been the law of the land for almost fifty years, and basic fairness and the stability of our law demand that it not be overturned,” Biden said. 

The president also pointed to Texas, its SB-8 law and others “restricting women’s reproductive rights.” 

“I directed my Gender Policy Council and White House Counsel’s Office to prepare options for an Administration response to the continued attack on abortion and reproductive rights, under a variety of possible outcomes in the cases pending before the Supreme Court,” Biden said. 

He added: “We will be ready when any ruling is issued.” 

Biden, in September, directed the Gender Policy Council and Office of the White House Counsel to launch “a whole-of-government effort to respond” to the Supreme Court’s ruling that allowed Texas’s “extreme” law that banned more abortions to remain in effect. 

The president tasked the councils with looking specifically to the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Justice to see what steps the federal government can take to “ensure that women in Texas have access to safe and legal abortions as protected” by Roe v. Wade, as well as what legal tools the administration has that could “insulate women and providers from the impact” of the Texas law. 

Biden, on Tuesday, added that if the Supreme Court “does overturn Roe, it will fall on our nation’s elected officials at all levels of government to protect a woman’s right to choose.” 

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“And it will fall on voters to elect pro-choice officials this November,” Biden said. “At the federal level, we will need more pro-choice Senators and a pro-choice majority in the House to adopt legislation that codifies Roe, which I will work to pass and sign into law.” 

The draft leak, first obtained by Politico, was written in early February. It is not immediately clear if the draft has been rewritten or revised.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday in a statement acknowledged that “a copy of a draft opinion in a pending case” was published Monday night. 

“Justices circulate draft opinions internally as a routine and essential part of the Court’s confidential deliberative work,” the high court said in a statement. “Although the document described in yesterday’s reports is authentic, it does not represent a decision by the Court or the final position of any member on the issues in the case.” 

Chief Justice John Roberts also released a statement Tuesday saying that the court “will not be affected in any way” by the leak.

“To the extent this betrayal of the confidences of the Court was intended to undermine the integrity of our operations, it will not succeed,” Roberts said. “The work of the Court will not be affected in any way.” 

“We at the Court are blessed to have a workforce – permanent employees and law clerks alike – intensely loyal to the institution and dedicated to the rule of law. Court employees have an exemplary and important tradition of respecting the confidentiality of the judicial process and upholding the trust of the Court,” Roberts said. 

“This was a singular and egregious breach of that trust that is an affront to the Court and the community of public servants who work here,” he continued. 

Roberts said he has “directed the Marshal of the Court to launch an investigation into the source of the leak.”

Brooke Singman is a Fox News Digital politics reporter. You can reach her at Brooke.Singman@Fox.com or @BrookeSingman on Twitter.

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