President Joe Biden has come under critique for having been vocal about his favorable stance on abortion while publicly maintaining his Catholic faith. White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki was asked about this seeming contradiction, as the Catholic Church is unequivocally opposed to abortion.
"The US Conference of Catholic Bishops are writing a document to clarify who should receive communion," a reporter asked. "This is targeted at politicians who have high public profiles. What's the president's reaction to this?"
"Joe Biden is a strong man of faith and as he noted just a couple of days ago, it's personal. He goes to church nearly every weekend. He even went when we were on our overseas trip. But it's personal to him, he doesn't see it through a political prism, and we're not going to comment on the inner workings of the Catholic Church," Psaki said.
The reporter asked if the move by the Bishops would make the President "reconsider his public support for policies that increase access to abortion or abortion rights?"
"Again," Psaki said, "the President's faith is personal. It is something that has helped guide him through some challenging moments in his life. And that's how many Americans see their faith as well. Not through a political prism. So I would suspect that he will continue to attend church, as he has for many many years."
The reporter tried to ask a followup, but Psaki said "I think we're going to move on to the next question because I've already answered that and it's personal."
Psaki was again forced to answer on Biden's position on abortion, when a reporter asked "Does the President believe a 15-week-old unborn baby is a human being?"
Psaki dodged the question entirely, asking in return "Are you asking me if the President supports a woman's right to choose? He does."
American Roman Catholic bishops announced on Friday that they'd passed a vote to draft a "teaching document" that would condemn Catholic politicians, such as President Biden but without naming anyone specifically, that receive communion despite voicing support for abortion rights.
At a press conference on Friday, a reporter asked Biden "Do you have a comment about what the Roman Catholic Bishops have done? Are you concerned about the rift within the Catholic Church and are you concerned about this action?"
Biden asked for clarification, "Say again?"
"The Catholic Bishops are moving on this resolution that would prevent you and others who've supported abortion from receiving communion. Are you concerned about the rift in the Catholic Church and how do you feel personally about that?" The reporter asked.
"It's a private matter, and I don't think that's going to happen," Biden said, and thanked reporters as he left the podium. Biden has said that while he personally opposes abortion, he doesn't feel that his personal view should be enacted as law.
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