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Trump sends support to anti-abortion activists at March for Life

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U.S. President Donald Trump spoke in a pre-recorded video to thousands of anti-abortion activists in Washington on Friday for the 46th March for Life, vowing to veto any legislation that “weakens the protection of human life.”

The event is the largest annual gathering in the United States of opponents of the Supreme Court’s 1973 ruling in Roe v. Wade. That ruling found that certain state laws outlawing abortion were an unconstitutional violation of a woman’s right to privacy, effectively legalizing abortion nationwide.

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“As president, I will always defend the first right in our Declaration of Independence, the right to life,” Trump said in remarks recorded in the Oval Office, a right he said extended to “unborn children.”

Vice President Mike Pence appeared onstage at the rally to introduce the video, calling Trump, who before entering politics said he supported abortion access, “the most pro-life president in American history.”

During his 2016 campaign, Trump vowed to appoint Supreme Court justices he believed would overturn Roe. He has since appointed two justices to the court, Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh, cementing the court’s 6-3 conservative-leaning majority.

Since the heated Senate confirmation hearings for Kavanaugh, the court has steered clear of some cases on volatile social issues involving abortion.

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Marchers held signs saying “Pray to End Abortion” and calling for the defunding Planned Parenthood, a national healthcare provider that provides abortions. “My unexpected pregnancy is now 30!” read another sign.

One marcher said she had an abortion when she was 15 but had been opposed to abortion ever since the birth of her first daughter.

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“Every child is human even in utero and they deserve the right to life,” Sheila, a 56-year-old Maryland resident, said in an interview, declining to give her last name because of the political divisiveness of the subject.

Speakers at this year’s rally include Congressman Dan Lipinski, a Democrat, and Congressman Chris Smith, a Republican.

Supporters of abortion access say bans infringe on women’s rights and health, and lead to greater rates of injury and death among pregnant women.

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About half of U.S. adults say abortion should be legal, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll last year, with about 68 percent of Democrats supporting abortion access compared to about 31 percent of Republicans.

(Additional reporting and writing by Jonathan Allen; Editing by Scott Malone, Bill Berkrot and Tom Brown)

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news outlets, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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‘He’s crazy’: MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace says Trump’s confused behavior is getting ‘impossible’ to ignore

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MSNBC's Nicolle Wallace argued Friday on "Deadline: White House" that the signs of Trump's frazzled and sometimes disjointed mental state are becoming "impossible" to ignore.

She first pointed to a passage in the New York Times report on his Thursday night rally, which said:

His speech was at times a greatest hits album of favorite lines, replaying the 2016 campaign against Hillary Clinton and bashing the news media, Democrats and America’s allies in Europe. Typically rambling, veering on and off script seemingly at random over an hour and a half, he repeated points he had already made earlier in the evening as if he did not remember already making them.

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Trump’s DOJ tells Supreme Court it is legal to fire transgender workers

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The Trump administration on Friday informed the U.S. Supreme Court it is the opinion of the Dept. of Justice that it is legal under federal law for employers to fire transgender workers merely for being transgender.

The DOJ's brief states Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, does not apply to transgender workers.

In reporting the development Buzzfeed calls it one of the Trump administration's "most agressive steps yet to legalize anti-transgender discrimination."

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GOP leadership tells House Republicans to lie about white supremacist gun massacres – call it ‘violence from the Left’

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House Republican leadership has sent a memo to GOP members of Congress directing them to lie about right wing white supremacist gun massacres, and to call it "violence from the left."

The memo, which The Tampa Bay Times acquired, includes talking points for congressional Republicans to parrot when speaking with reporters or constituents. It instructs them on how to address questions about gun violence, including the domestic terrorism recently perpetrated in El Paso, Texas.

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