WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump addressed the thousands attending the 45th annual March for Life on Friday, speaking to a gathering at the White House rose garden and also being broadcast to the event via satellite.
“The March for Life is a movement born out of love: You love your families. You love your neighbors. You love our nation. And you love every child, born and unborn, because you believe that every life is sacred [and] that every child is a precious gift from God,” he said.
The ecumenical march has been held in Washington each year since the 1973 ruling of Roe v. Wade to be a voice for the thousands of unborn children who are killed every day in their mother’s womb.
As previously reported, Roe v. Wade centered on a Texas woman named Norma McCorvey who sought an abortion over an alleged rape. McCorvey later admitted that she had lied, writing in her book “I Am Roe” that she made up the rape story at the advice of her feminist attorneys to make her case more convincing.
She also never obtained an abortion, but placed her child up for adoption and went on to become a vocal pro-life advocate, even going to court in an effort to overturn the ruling.
“My decisions were wrong and I am fighting with every breath to change what has occurred,” McCorvey, a Roman Catholic, said in 2008.
She died last year at the age of 69.
“I want to thank every person here today and all across our country who works with such big hearts and tireless devotion to make sure that parents have the care and support they need to choose life,” Trump stated during Friday’s event. “Because of you, tens of thousands of Americans have been born and have reached their full God-given potential. You are living witnesses of this year’s March for Life theme … love saves lives.”
“As you all know, Roe v. Wade has resulted in some of the most permissive abortion laws anywhere in the world,” he acknowledged. “For example, in the United States, it’s only one of seven countries to allow elective late-term abortions, along with China, North Korea and others. Right now, in a number of states, the laws allow a baby to be aborted from his or her mother’s womb in the ninth month. It is wrong. It has to change.”
“Under my administration, we will always defend the very first right in the Declaration of Independence, and that is the right to life,” Trump said, generating applause.
He noted that at the start of his presidency, he reinstated the Mexico City Policy, which prohibits federal funds from being used for overseas abortions, and said that he supports the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which he urged Congress to pass and send to his desk.
“We are with you all the way,” Trump said to the marchers. “May God bless you and may God bless America.”
Vice President Mike Pence, who addressed the rally live at the National Mall last year, also spoke at the White House rose garden, stating that the Supreme Court has wrongly turned its back on the God-given right to life.
“More than 240 years ago, our founders wrote words that echoed through the ages: They declared these truths to be self-evident—that we are, each of us, endowed by our Creator with certain inalienable rights, and that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” he said.
“45 years ago, the United States Supreme Court turned its back on the inalienable right to life,” Pence lamented. “But in that moment, our movement began—a movement that continues to win hearts and minds. A movement defined by generosity, compassion and love.”
He likewise stated that the administration is supportive of the cause to defend the right to life for the unborn.
“[K]now as you March for Life, that your compassion, your persistence, your activism and your prayers are saving lives,” he said. “And this pro-life generation should never doubt [that] we are with you, this presidents stands with you, and He who said, ‘Before I formed you in the the mother’s womb, I knew you’ is with you as well.”
As previously reported, Trump, who previously identified as “pro-choice” and now identifies as pro-life, outlined in an op-ed in January 2016 that he does “support that position with exceptions allowed for rape, incest or the life of the mother being at risk.” He also told NBC’s “Today Show” in April 2016 that he would like to change the Republican platform to include the three exceptions since there are currently none in the text.
It is not known as to whether or not Trump still supports abortion exceptions or if his position has changed since taking office.