Former Biden campaign official ‘took offense’ to White House statement on abortion action

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Ashley Allison, a former Biden-Harris campaign official, said on Sunday that she took offense to a White House statement on abortion action last week.

In a statement to The Washington Post, departing White House communications director Kate Bedingfield responded to criticism that Biden had not gone fast or far enough in his response to the Supreme Court overturning the constitutional right to abortion last month in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.

“Joe Biden’s goal in responding to Dobbs is not to satisfy some activists who have been consistently out of step with the mainstream of the Democratic Party,” Bedingfield told the Post in an article published Saturday.

“It’s to deliver help to women who are in danger and assemble a broad-based coalition to defend a woman’s right to choose now, just as he assembled such a coalition to win during the 2020 campaign,” she added.

Allison, who served as the Biden campaign’s national coalitions director, said she was “disappointed in that statement as an activist,” during an appearance on CNN’s “State of the Union,” noting that activists were part of the coalition that delivered Biden the White House.

“And 2020, when people took to the streets because of the death of George Floyd, it invigorated the base in a way that allowed us to have record turnout,” Allison told moderator Jake Tapper.

She added that Democrats should be excited that abortion is a top issue heading into the midterms and said the administration calling pro-abortion activists “out of step with the mainstream” was bad politics.

“And to demonize them and say they’re not mainstream, well, abortion is a very popular issue in the country, and it goes across Democratic and Republican lines,” Allison said. “I think it was an unforced error. And I hope they address it. I’m not sure they will. But it — I took offense to it. And a lot of people have.”

The Hill reached out to the White House about Allison’s comments.

On Friday, President Biden unveiled an executive order aiming to protect abortion and contraception access in the country in response to the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade. But he again acknowledged Congress has ultimate control over the issue.

“If you want to change the circumstance for women, and even little girls in this country, please go out and vote,” Biden said.

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