WASHINGTON (CBS DC) — In an address to the annual pro-life, anti-abortion March for Life protestors, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) stated that the removal of taxpayer funds for abortion is one of his top goals for the year.
While addressing the crowd at the National Mall via video broadcast, Boehner said it’s time for anti-abortion activisits to, “commit ourselves to doing everything we can to protect the sanctity of life.” The first step, he said, is to make the Hyde Amendment, which prevents federal dollars from being used to pay for abortions except in cases of rape or incest, a permanent piece of legislature.
“For the new Congress, that means bringing together a bipartisan pro-life majority and getting to work,” Boehner said. “In accordance with the will of the people, we will again work to pass the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, formally codifying the Hyde Amendment.”
“Let that be one of our most fundamental goals this year,” he continued.
Thousands of anti-abortion demonstrators marched through Washington to the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday to protest the landmark Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion.
The annual event took on added significance for many in the crowd since it coincided with the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that created a constitutional right to abortion in some circumstances. The demonstrators, carrying signs with messages such as “Defend Life” and “Defund Planned Parenthood,” shouted chants including “Hey, Hey, Ho, Ho, Roe v. Wade has got to go.” They packed the National Mall and surrounding streets for the March of Life.
A recent Pew Research Center poll finds 63 percent of U.S. adults are opposed to overturning Roe, compared to 60 percent in 1992.
Earlier this week, abortion opponents marked the anniversary with workshops, prayers and calls for more limits on abortion rights. And even as Obama this week reaffirmed his commitment to “reproductive freedom,” state legislatures continue to consider varied restrictions on a woman’s ability to receive an abortion.
Numerous politicians attended the abortion protest.
Rep. Diane Black (R-Tenn.) touted a bill she recently introduced that would strip Title X family planning funds from Planned Parenthood, and Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) delivered a sermon that called for a “spiritual cleansing.”
“Our nation is adrift, adrift in a wilderness where right and wrong have become subservient to a hedonism of the moment,” Paul said. “I believe our country is in need of a spiritual cleansing.”