President Donald Trump will appoint a Supreme Court Justice to “uphold the God-given liberties enshrined in our Constitution in the tradition of the late and great Justice Antonin Scalia,” the new Vice President told the cheering crowd at the nation’s March For Life.
“We are, all of us, endowed by our Creator, with certain unalienable rights, and that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” Vice President Mike Pence declared January 27. “Forty-four years ago our Supreme Court turned away from the first of these timeless ideals,” Pence said, referring to the right to life declared by the Founders of the United States 240 years ago in the Declaration of Independence.
Pence, the first Vice President to attend the March, continued, “but today, three generations hence, because of all of you and the many thousands who stand with us in marches like this all across the nation, Life is winning again in America.”
Pence backed his claim with the election of Trump and the “election of pro-life majorities in the Congress of the United States of America.” Trump “asked me to thank you for your support, for your stand for life and for your compassion for the women and children of America,” Pence said.
“From his first day in office he’s been keeping his promises to the American people,” declared Pence, who then gave three specific actions of the Trump administration. “That’s why on Monday, President Trump reinstated the Mexico City policy to prevent foreign aid from funding organizations that promote or perform abortions worldwide,” he said.
“That’s why this Administration will work with the Congress to end taxpayer funding of abortion and abortion providers and we will devote those resources to health care services for women across America,” Pence told the crowd.
Pence called Friday’s March a “celebration” of the progress of the Right to Life movement. “I’ve long believed that a society can be judged by how we care for our most vulnerable: the aged, the infirm, the disabled and the unborn.”
“We must meet this moment with respect and compassion for every American,” Pence said, calling this a historic moment for the “cause of life.” “Life is winning through the steady advance of science that illuminates when life begins, more and more every day,” said Pence. “Life is winning through the generosity of millions of adoptive families who open their hearts and homes to children in need.”
Pence spoke of caregivers and volunteers at crisis pregnancy centers and at faith-based organizations which minister to women across the country. He said “life is winning” also through the “quiet counsels between mothers and daughters, grandmothers and granddaughters, between friends across kitchen tables and over coffee at college campuses.”
“The truth is being told, passion is overcoming convenience and hope is defeating despair,” said Pence. He urged those in the movement to “press on,” adding;
“Let your gentleness be evident to all. Let this movement be known for love, not anger, let this movement be known for compassion, not confrontation. When it comes to matters of the heart, there is nothing stronger than gentleness. I believe we will continue to win the hearts and minds of the rising generation if our hearts first break for young mothers and their unborn children and if we, each of us do all we can to meet them where they are with generosity, not judgement.
“On behalf of the President of the United States and my little family, we thank you for your stand for life. We thank you for your compassion. We thank you for your love for the women and children of America.” The Vice President continued, “Be assured along with you we will not grow weary, we will not rest until we restore a culture of life in America for ourselves and our posterity.”
Tens of thousands of people are expected to participate in this year’s March for Life on January 27th in Washington, D.C.
The March for Life is an annual anti-abortion rally that takes place on or around the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 Supreme Court decision that said a woman has a right to have an abortion. This year’s rally has earned more attention than usual because the vice president of the United States, Mike Pence, will attend, and President Donald Trump will reportedly call in.
Here’s what you need to know about the 2017 March for Life.
1. It Starts at Noon on the Grounds of the Washington Monument
The 2017 March for Life begins at 12:00 p.m. Eastern Time on the grounds of the Washington Monument.
This rally portion of the event will last for one hour, with several politicians and religious figures speaking. At 1:00 p.m. Eastern Time, the march itself will begin; it will go up Constitution Avenue to the Supreme Court and the Capitol Building.
At 3:00 p.m., protesters will listen to testimonies outside of the Supreme Court building.
There are currently 11 speakers lined up for the rally portion of the March for Life, with the biggest name being Vice President Mike Pence; he was just added to the event on Thursday morning.
Vice President Pence has had a consistently pro-life record throughout his political career, especially when he was governor of Indiana; in 2016, he signed into law House Bill 1337, which, among other restrictions, bars doctors from performing abortions for women who are seeking them due to fetal abnormalities. The law was later blocked by a federal judge.
This is the first time a vice president has ever attended the March for Life. No president has attended, although a few have delivered remarks remotely. Also speaking will be Kellyanne Conway, senior counselor to President Donald Trump. She is the first woman to ever run a successful presidential campaign in the United States.
The rest of the day’s speakers will be:
Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York City,
The 2017 March for Life has a theme this year of “The Power of One.” On its social media pages, the organization has described this as the idea that one person can make a difference in the world and that babies that are aborted don’t have the chance to do so.
Through its website, the March for Life has been asking participants to send in stories of how someone has impacted them with the cause of life or how they personally made a difference in their community for life. Many of these submissions come from people who were put in a situation where they considered getting an abortion but decided against it.
One story, for example, is from a woman who says she got pregnant at the age of 19 and went to Planned Parenthood to receive an abortion, but she says she instantly regretted it as soon as she took the first of two pills.
“I looked online for help, but found nothing until I finally came across abortionpillreversal.com,” she writes. “The site offered a hotline number, and when I called, a nurse from a pregnancy center answered and explained that a regimen had just been released to reverse the abortion pill I had taken.
“I knew it wasn’t certain to work, but I was desperate. She found (and I drove) to a doctor 2 hours away who began progesterone injections, which I continued for weeks, as we tried to save my baby. Despite the abortion clinic calling and saying that this would not work, I continued on with my pregnancy, and my second son, Zechariah, was born on 10/20/2013.”
The March for Life has been taking place every year for the past four decades. It was started by Nellie Gray, with the first march being held on January 22nd, 1974, the one year anniversary of Roe v. Wade. The event is usually held on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade; this year it was pushed ahead a bit because of all of the inauguration events that took place last week.
The general goal of the march is always to advocate for the overturning of Roe v. Wade, although some years there are more immediate causes to rally for, such as in 2009 when Congress introduced the Freedom of Choice Act, which would declare that every woman has the fundamental right to receive an abortion without restriction.
This bill was not ultimately signed into law. This year, President Trump’s forthcoming Supreme Court nominee announcement will certainly be on the minds of all in attendance.
Although no president has ever appeared at the march in person, some previous Republican presidents have supported the event, and President Ronald Reagan and President George W. Bush spoke remotely.
The late Nellie Gray was the founder of the March for Life, an annual anti-abortion march in Washington D.C., timed for the anniversary of Roe v. Wade.
5. President Trump Says the Media Doesn’t Pay Enough Attention to the March
President Donald Trump in recent days has been plugging the March for Life in response to the Women’s March on Washington, saying that the media refuses to cover the anti-abortion rally.
“The crowds were large, but you will have a large crowd on Friday, too, which is mostly pro-life people,” Trump said in an interview with ABC News on Thursday. “You’re going to have a lot of people coming Friday. And I will say this, and I didn’t realize this, but I was told, you will have a very large crowd of people. I don’t know as large or larger. Some people said it will be larger. Pro-life people and they say the press doesn’t cover them.”