Kamala Harris travels to Florida as the six-week abortion ban takes effect

Vice President Kamala Harris will travel to Jacksonville, Florida, on Wednesday to focus on abortion access – the same day the state's six-week abortion ban goes into effect.

In her remarks, Harris once again plans to link the state's ban to former President Donald Trump and blame him for the other bans currently in place across much of the country, according to excerpts obtained by ABC News.

Harris will also respond to Trump's recent comments on abortion in a Time magazine article in which he said he would let states decide whether or not to monitor women's pregnancies to determine whether someone has one Having abortions performed after their state has legalized it will ban them and then prosecute them.

“It’s irrelevant whether I feel comfortable or not,” Trump told Time magazine. “It’s completely irrelevant because states will make these decisions.”

President Joe Biden also released a statement Wednesday sharply criticizing Trump and the state's latest abortion ban, calling the restrictions “extreme” because they “ban reproductive health care before many women even know they are pregnant.” .

Harris' trip comes a little more than a week after Biden traveled to the state for a campaign event in Tampa, where he documented the ban, which includes a few exemptions for the life of pregnant women in fatal fetal anomalies and cases of Rape, incest or human trafficking – up to 15 weeks of pregnancy.

The Biden-Harris reelection campaign has tried to focus on abortion as a defining issue of the 2024 race.

During Biden's event in Tampa, the president called out former President Trump by name and blamed him for the spread of abortion bans across the country following the overturn of Roe v. Wade in 2022.

“He is [Trump is] Wrong, the Supreme Court is wrong. “It should be a constitutional right in the federal Constitution, a federal right, and it shouldn’t matter where you live in America,” Biden said at the time, adding, “This is about women’s rights.”

Since the Roe decision, made by the court's six conservative-leaning justices, including three appointed by Trump, 17 states have passed full or near-total bans on abortion access.

Biden's comments on abortion in Florida were also notable because he had a complicated relationship with the issue of abortion due to his faith as a devout Catholic.

Instead, the White House and the campaign have largely used Harris as a key ambassador on abortion.

She launched a “Reproductive Freedom Tour” in January and quickly traveled to Arizona in April after that state’s Supreme Court upheld that state’s 160-year-old, near-total ban on abortion.

Before Harris' trip to Florida, the Democratic National Committee held a call with reporters and Southern Democratic leaders, including Democratic Party chairs from Florida, North Carolina and Virginia.

Democrats have highlighted the Biden campaign's attacks on Trump, linking the former president to government bans and warning that restrictions would increase further if Trump is elected again.

Democrats have also emphasized that abortion rights have come out on top every time voters have voted on them.

“We have seen reproductive rights initiatives win in every election cycle since Roe vs. Wade was overturned because the vast majority of Americans believe that decisions about reproductive health care should be made by women and their doctors, not politicians.” said Florida Democratic Chairwoman Nikki Fried. “And as President Biden has said repeatedly, Trump and extreme Republicans have no idea about the power of women in America, but they will find out soon.”

Trump, for his part, celebrated the end of Roe but said abortion should now be decided by each state: “Ultimately, this is all about the will of the people. “You have to follow your heart, or in many cases, your religion or your faith,” he said earlier this month.

While he insists that as president he would not sign a national abortion ban if Congress passed one, he also has not said he would veto such a law if necessary.

“I won’t have to commit to it because it’s never going to happen — No. 1, it’s never going to happen, No. 2, it’s about states’ rights,” he said in a recent interview with Time magazine. “They don’t want to go back to the federal government. This was just about getting out of the federal government.”

Harris' trip to Florida will be her 12th visit to the state since she was sworn in as vice president, a sign of how serious she and Biden's campaign are about winning back Florida this election cycle after Trump's victories in 2016 and 2020.

Florida GOP Chairman Evan Power maintains that abortion is not the issue that can sway the state in favor of the opposing party.

“Democrats made [abortion] “The No. 1 issue they faced in Florida in 2022, and we won with 19% of the vote,” Power previously told ABC News.

Regarding the six-week suspension, Power said, “The voters sent their representatives to Tallahassee to implement this and they implemented it. So I don’t think there will be any backlash at all.”

But national and state Democrats believe the combination of the state's six-week abortion ban and an abortion-choice measure that would allow access to the procedure until it is feasible — presumably around 24 weeks of pregnancy — would allow the party to have a better chance of passing state in November as abortion access has been considered a winning issue for Democrats since 2022.

“Our agenda, our coalition and the unique dynamics of this election make it clear: President Biden is in a stronger position to win Florida this cycle than he was in 2020,” Biden campaign manager Julie Chavez Rodriguez wrote in a memo in early April, prompting the cautious Optimism reflected by some in her party.

ABC News' Ely Brown contributed to this report.

Anna Harden

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