This might be a little late to comment on a remark made by Joe Biden in the 2012 U.S. Vice Presidential debate, but here goes. Joe Biden said this:
With regard to -- with regard to abortion, I accept my church's position on abortion as a -- what we call a (inaudible) doctrine. Life begins at conception in the church's judgment. I accept it in my personal life.When you think about it, this is a very interesting position. It would seem that Biden agrees with the pro-life view that human personhood begins at conception, yet disagrees that abortion should be outlawed. But as philosophy professor Francis J. Beckwith points out in an article I recently read,
But I refuse to impose it on equally devout Christians and Muslims and Jews, and I just refuse to impose that on others, unlike my friend here, the -- the congressman. I -- I do not believe that we have a right to tell other people that -- women they can't control their body. It's a decision between them and their doctor.
if the unborn [child] is a full-fledged member of the human community, and if a community’s end is justice for all persons under its authority, then a community that were to permit the unjustified killing of such beings would not be doing justice. But not just any injustice, but a deeply serious one, an injustice that says that members of one segment of its population may kill members of another segment without any public justification whatsoever.By my lights, Biden has some explaining to do regarding the ethical coherency of his position. If one thinks abortions really do kill innocent people, why condone its legality?
 Beckwith, Francis J. “Zygotes, Embryos, and Subsistence” Philosophia Christi 14.1 (Summer 2012) p. 210