Cuomo pens op-ed blasting Trump for 'assault on abortion rights'

Cuomo pens op-ed blasting Trump for 'assault on abortion rights'
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New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) on Wednesday accused President TrumpDonald John TrumpCould Donald Trump and Boris Johnson be this generation's Reagan-Thatcher? Merkel backs Democratic congresswomen over Trump How China's currency manipulation cheats America on trade MORE of "spreading lies" about the state's recent legislation to expand access to abortion after the president seized on the law during his State of the Union address.

Cuomo wrote in an op-ed for The New York Times that Trump and the "religious right" have pushed misleading claims about New York's Reproductive Health Act with the ultimate goal of outlawing all legal abortion.

"Mr. Trump and the religious right are spreading falsehoods about New York’s law to inflame their base," Cuomo wrote. "Activists on the far right continue to mislead with the ridiculous claim that the act will allow abortions up to a minute before birth."

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Cuomo noted that the legislation passed last month in New York does not allow abortions minutes before birth, nor does it permit abortions "for any reason." The bill allows women to get abortions after 24 weeks if their life or health is threatened by the pregnancy, or if the fetus is not viable.

"Too much of today’s political discourse is extreme," Cuomo wrote. "But emotions run especially high when politics and religion intersect — as in the debate about a woman’s right to choose. As a Roman Catholic, I am intimately familiar with the strongly held views of the church. Still, I do not believe that religious values should drive political positions."

The governor added that New York moved to codify laws protecting access to abortions out of concern that the Supreme Court, which has shifted to the right under Trump, may overturn Roe v. Wade.

New York's legislation and a bill proposed in Virginia that would allow third-trimester abortions if the mother's health were threatened have renewed debate in recent weeks about late-term abortion.

The president in his State of the Union address cited both laws in calling on Congress to pass legislation outlawing late-term abortions.

“To defend the dignity of every person, I am asking Congress to pass legislation to prohibit the late-term abortion of children who can feel pain in the mother’s womb,” Trump said.

The president’s comments received applause from Republicans in the room. Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinPoll: McConnell is most unpopular senator Dems open to killing filibuster in next Congress Trump nominees meet fiercest opposition from Warren, Sanders, Gillibrand MORE (D-W.Va.) stood and clapped, but most Democrats remained seated.

Supreme Court justices could be seen briefly on camera, and held neutral expressions.