Trump voices ‘strong support’ for IVF treatments after Alabama ruling

<span>Donald Trump in Nashville, Tennessee, on 22 February.</span><span>Photograph: George Walker IV/AP</span>
Donald Trump in Nashville, Tennessee, on 22 February.Photograph: George Walker IV/AP

Donald Trump has voiced “strong support” for IVF treatments, days after a ruling by the Alabama supreme court threw into question the legal status of human embryos and several providers in the state cut off access to the procedure.

The former US president said that under his leadership, the Republican party “will always support the creation of strong, thriving, healthy American families”.

“We want to make it easier for mothers and fathers to have babies, not harder! That includes supporting the availability of fertility treatments like IVF in every State in America,” Trump wrote on Truth Social.

Separately, Kari Lake, the Republican candidate for Senate from Arizona, said she backed expanded access to the fertility treatment.

“One in six Americans struggle with fertility issues,” Lake said in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter.

“In the Senate, I will advocate for increased access to fertility treatment for women struggling to get pregnant,” she said. “IVF is extremely important for helping countless families experience the joy of parenthood. I oppose restrictions.”

Republicans have been struggling to find a unified response to the decision this week after losing multiple state elections after the fall of Roe v Wade. On Thursday, the Republican US senator Tommy Tuberville of Alabama seemingly struggled to grasp the contradictory situation women have been placed in after his state’s supreme court ruled that frozen embryos are “children”.

Related: Doctors shocked and angry as Alabama ruling throws IVF care into turmoil

Asked at a conservative conference what he would say to women currently denied the fertility treatment, the former college football coach replied: “Yeah, I was all for it. We need to have more kids, we need to have an opportunity to do that, and I thought this was the right thing to do.”

But then when he was pressed on whether the ruling would negatively affect people who are trying to have conceive, Tuberville said: “Well, that’s, that’s for another conversation. I think the big thing is right now, you protect – you go back to the situation and try to work it out to where it’s best for everybody. I mean, that’s what – that’s what the whole abortion issue is about.”

As a result of the ruling in question in Alabama, at least three IVF providers in the state have suspended services.

“That’s a hard one,” Tuberville said when asked about IVF availability in Alabama. “It really is.”

Tuberville said: “I’d have to look at what they’re agreeing to and not agreeing to. I haven’t seen that.”

But he said that it was “unfortunate” if the women would be denied the procedure.

Tuberville’s spokesperson Hannah Eddins later sought to clarify the senator’s remarks, saying he had been “emphasizing his support for life at all stages”.

“In addition to being pro-life and believing life begins at conception, Senator Tuberville is also pro-family,” Eddins said. “He believes strong families are instrumental to our country’s success.”

The Alabama court’s decision, released earlier this week, came in response to a lawsuit by a group of IVF patients whose frozen embryos were destroyed in December 2020 when a patient removed the embryos from a cryogenic storage unit and dropped them on the ground.

With the ruling, Republican anti-abortion politicians are now in a bind between opposing abortion and supporting treatments that promote conception.

In a statement on Friday, Joe Biden scoffed at Trump’s response to the Alabama ruling. “American women couldn’t care less what Donald Trump posts on Truth Social, they care that they can’t access fertility treatment because of him.”