ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) — An anti-abortion rally took place in St. Petersburg on Saturday morning as multiple abortion ban bills are currently working their way through the Florida Legislature.
Saturday marked the 49th anniversary of Roe vs. Wade, the landmark 1973 Supreme Court ruling that legalized abortion in the United States, but the fate of abortion rights across the country are in doubt.
Anti-abortion activists, pastors and families took to the streets in downtown St. Pete for the 2nd annual March for Life.
“We’re out here to show the Tampa Bay is pro-life,” said Scott Mahurin with Florida Pre-Born Rescue. “That we care about every life that every life matters from the womb to the tomb.”
The U.S. Supreme Court is currently considering a Mississippi law that, if upheld, would allow states to further restrict access to abortion services. The court could also overturn the landmark decision that made abortion a constitutional right meaning abortion would become illegal in 12 states with many others likely to follow.
“Hopefully, it will be,” Mahurin said. “That states then can take and write their own abortion laws and determine their own abortion laws for themselves and not have a federal mandate from nine unelected judges.”
But for those who are pro-abortion rights, including Planned Parenthood, they know it could be the last anniversary of Roe Vs. Wade.
“It would paint a very different landscape come this summer, but at our organization at Planned Parenthood, we will continue to provide care, including abortion care up to whatever the law allows,” said Stephanie Fraim, Planned Parenthood President & Chief Executive Officer.
This as a 15-week abortion ban bill cleared a Florida House Subcommittee and will head to its next two hearings. It’s one of multiple abortion ban bills currently working their way through the legislature.
“It’s clear that the Florida Legislature is trying to ban abortion,” Fraim said. “We know that is not what people of Florida want.”
The Supreme Court justices are scheduled to hear the case in the fall and are likely to make a decision summer next year.