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March for Life Draws Massive Crowd to D.C.

On the 41st anniversary of Roe v. Wade, a flood of pro-life advocates converged on Washington D.C. for the annual March for Life. Despite the snowy, bitter cold conditions, organizers estimate 300,000 pro-lifers filled the National Mall Thursday and marched through D.C. to the steps of the Supreme Court.

Holding banners and placards reading “We are the Pro-Life Generation” and “Life Counts,” participants marked the anniversary of the Supreme Court ruling that enshrined abortion as a right by demonstrating to Washington that many Americans want more protection for unborn children (images via TheBlaze).

Over the last few years, the pro-life movement has made considerable strides in state legislatures and culturally via social media campaigns. USA Today reports:

The fight to limit abortion has shifted largely to state legislatures. Since 2011, there have been more than 200 abortion restrictions — mandatory counseling, waiting periods, clinic regulations and more — enacted in 30 states, compared with 212 between 2001 and 2010, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a reproductive health think tank that advocates abortion rights. […]

It was the 40th year for the march to the Supreme Court, and 2014 brought social media changes. This year there was a March For Life app — and a Facebook “virtual march” where people who couldn’t make it to the event could show support by posting a past March for Life photo as their cover photo.

Despite the success of the event, Thursday was also met with some disappointment among pro-life advocates, as a House bill that would ban most abortions after 20 weeks was abruptly shelved Wednesday evening. Republican leadership withdrew the proposal after some female GOP lawmakers reportedly objected to the crafting of some of its exemptions.

The legislative disappointment was offset, however, by a presumed victory in Congress, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortions Act expected to pass in the House. As US News reports, the act would address abortion-coverage issues in Obamacare and codify the Hyde Amendment to prohibit the use of federal funds to pay for abortions except in cases of rape or incest:

Republicans see the bill as righting a grievous wrong done by the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, after a Government Accountability Office report found plans available on 18 states’ exchanges included abortion coverage without the funding restrictions required by the law.

Thursday’s bill would codify the Hyde Amendment so it would not need to be re-passed each year, as well as force the administration to keep a 2010 promise to require people who receive federal subsidies to purchase comprehensive health insurance to pay a separate monthly premium for the included abortion coverage. 

Complete coverage of the event via EWTN: