Biden supports taxpayer-funded abortion, and has said that his health care "public option" would fund abortion and contraception, and has promised to review state laws regulating abortions, such as ultrasound or parental consent requirements.
The issues of euthanasia or of doctor-prescribed suicide do not appear in the 2020 Democratic Party platform; the 2020 Republican Party platform, recycled from 2016, states its opposition to euthanasia and assisted suicide.
The word "preeminent" regarding abortion appears in the U.S. bishops' 2020 introductory letter for their voting document "Faithful Citizenship"; it was also the subject of some discussion at their fall, 2019, meeting.
According to the bishops' letter, "[t]he threat of abortion remains our preeminent priority because it directly attacks life itself, because it takes place within the sanctuary of the family, and because of the number of lives destroyed."
The letter goes on to add that "we cannot dismiss or ignore other serious threats to human life and dignity such as racism, the environmental crisis, poverty and the death penalty."
At their November meeting in Baltimore last year, the U.S. bishops voted to approve the draft language of the letter.
During a parliamentary discussion about the letter, Bishop Robert McElroy of San Diego then brought up the use of the word "preeminent" before the mention of abortion in the bishops' draft letter. McElroy objected to use of the word, and said that if it stayed in the document, a more extensive quotation from Pope Francis should also be included to summarize his full social teaching more accurately.
"It is not Catholic that abortion is the preeminent issue that we face as a world in Catholic social teaching. It is not," Bishop McElroy said.
After that remark, Archbishop Charles Chaput weighed in: "I am against anyone stating that our saying [abortion] is 'preeminent' is contrary to the teaching of the pope. Because that isn't true," he said. "It sets an artificial battle between the bishops' conference of the United States and the Holy Father which isn't true."
"I think it has been very clearly the articulated opinion of the bishops' conference for many years that pro-life is still the preeminent issue," Chaput said. "It doesn't mean the others aren't equal in dignity, it's just time, in the certain circumstances of our Church, in the United States."