Political Insider

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Trump seems ready to negotiate on immigration, healthcare – but not abortion

President-elect Donald Trump signaled he was ready to negotiate on some of his toughest campaign positions on immigration and healthcare, suggesting the hardline stances that helped him win over conservative voters were starting points for deal-making in Congress.

But even as he said he was “fine” with the Supreme Court decision to validate gay marriage, he also repeated his pledge to seek to roll back the ruling that legalized abortion rights.

In his first prime-time interview since his election, Trump told “60 Minutes” he endorsed parts of President Obama’s healthcare overhaul that required coverage of Americans with pre-existing conditions and allowed people under the age of 26 to stay on their parents’ plan.

He said his main immigration priority would be to deport about 2 million undocumented immigrants he said had criminal records - a departure from an initial campaign vow to deport all of the estimated 11 million people in the country illegally. He also said the wall he vowed to build on the U.S. border with Mexico would be a fence in some places.

And in this snippet he talked about the fight to overturn the Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion rights in 1973:

Lesley Stahl: During the campaign, you said that you would appoint justices who were against abortion rights. Will you appoint-- are you looking to appoint a justice who wants to overturn Roe v. Wade?

Donald Trump: So look, here’s what’s going to happen-- I’m going to-- I’m pro-life. The judges will be pro-life. They’ll be very—

Lesley Stahl: But what about overturning this law--

Donald Trump: Well, there are a couple of things. They’ll be pro-life, they’ll be-- in terms of the whole gun situation, we know the Second Amendment and everybody’s talking about the Second Amendment and they’re trying to dice it up and change it, they’re going to be very pro-Second Amendment. But having to do with abortion if it ever were overturned, it would go back to the states. So it would go back to the states and--

 Lesley Stahl: Yeah, but then some women won’t be able to get an abortion?

 Donald Trump: No, it’ll go back to the states.

Lesley Stahl: By state—no some --

 Donald Trump: Yeah.

 Donald Trump: Yeah, well, they’ll perhaps have to go, they’ll have to go to another state.

 Lesley Stahl: And that’s OK?

Donald Trump: Well, we’ll see what happens. It’s got a long way to go, just so you understand. That has a long, long way to go.

Read more about the fallout of last week’s election:

Amendment 1 defeat is threat to the governor’s agenda

Trump victory scrambles the field for 2018 Georgia governor’s race

A presidential campaign that turned on what we refused to see

Top Georgia Democrats prepare for era of Trump

Clinton supporters in Georgia struggle: “How can they not see what I see?”

In Georgia, Glascock County is the heart of Trump Country

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About the Author

Greg Bluestein is a political reporter who covers the governor's office and state politics for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.