The comments — in Trump’s first television interview since winning the presidency — sharply contrast with his party’s orthodoxy, his running mate’s longtime position and comments he made during the Republican primaries.
“It’s law,” he said in an interview with CBS’ “60 Minutes” that aired Sunday. “It was settled in the Supreme Court. I mean, it’s done.”
“These cases have gone to the Supreme Court. They’ve been settled. And I’m — I’m fine with that,” he added.
When asked if he will appoint a Supreme Court justice who wants to overturn Roe v. Wade, Trump said his judges will be “pro-life” and suggested that the decision could be overturned.
“If it ever were overturned, it would go back to the states,” Trump said.
He added that women seeking abortions would have to go “go to another state” for the procedure.
The Republican Party’s platform, ratified by the party in July, opposes same-sex marriage, condemns the Supreme Court’s rulings in Obergefell v. Hodges (which legalized gay marriage nationwide) and United States v. Windsor (which struck down a core component of the Defense of Marriage Act) and supports proposed “religious freedom” legislation that critics say would allow businesses to deny services to LGBT people.
His comments about same-sex marriage break with the longtime position of Vice President–elect Mike Pence, who signed a “religious freedom” bill into law in 2015 but walked back some of its language after facing backlash from across the country.
Trump, who has spent his life in liberal New York City, referred to LGBT Republicans at the Republican National Convention and said during his campaign that transgender people should use whatever bathroom they feel comfortable using.
During the Republican presidential primaries, he said the gay marriage issue should have been left to the states and that he would consider appointing judges to overrule the Supreme Court’s marriage decisions.
“I would strongly consider that, yes,” he said in a January Fox News interview.