Abortion opponents rally at Minnesota Capitol

A crowd of people holding signs on the state Capitol steps
A large crowd of abortion opponents gathered outside the Minnesota Capitol for the annual March for Life event on Wednesday.
Tim Pugmire | MPR News

Abortion opponents gathered in large numbers outside the Minnesota Capitol Wednesday for the annual March for Life.

The event, sponsored by Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life, marks the anniversary of the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion. The event is also aimed at calling on lawmakers to help stop abortions.

Dozens of Republican state legislators were in attendance, and 8th District Republican U.S. Rep. Pete Stauber was a featured speaker. Stauber told the crowd that he is leading the fight to stop abortions.

“Since arriving at the House of Representatives over a year ago, I have made it a priority to back all pro-life bills,” Stauber said.

Minnesota Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka, R-Nisswa, also spoke. He said he and other Republican state lawmakers are battling in the legislature to prevent abortions in the state.

“These are the legislators that stand in the gap for life. We’re pro-life proud,” he said.

Supporters of abortion rights also marked the anniversary.

The Planned Parenthood of Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota Action Fund celebrated by hosting a get-out-the vote effort aimed at electing lawmakers that are aligned with its position.

House Speaker Melissa Hortman, DFL-Brooklyn Park, who attended the event in St. Paul, said reproductive health care and choice remain under attack.

“We all have to do as much as we can to ensure that when election night 2020 arrives, we have the progressive, pro-choice state and nation we need,” Hortman said.

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