After ‘Roe’ ruling, abortion opponents rally at Connecticut March for Life

It’s the first “Connecticut March for Life” since the U.S. Supreme Court reversed the landmark Roe v. Wade decision.

John Craven

Mar 22, 2023, 10:17 PM

Updated 425 days ago


They may be in the minority in Connecticut, but 2,500 abortion opponents rallied at the state Capitol Wednesday. It’s the first “Connecticut March for Life” since the U.S. Supreme Court reversed the landmark Roe v. Wade decision.
“It took us 49 years to overturn Roe v. Wade, and if it takes us another 49 years to overturn the law keeping it legal here in Connecticut, we'll keep doing that too,” said Peter Wolfgang, executive director of the Family Institute of Connecticut.
State law has guaranteed abortion access since 1990. Last year, the legislature’s Democratic majority strengthened the law – including the nation’s first Reproductive Freedom Defense Act shielding abortion providers from out-of-state lawsuits. Connecticut has also partnered with New York state to provide free legal advice to patients.
Despite all that, Wednesday’s rally had a fresh energy since more than a dozen states have passed abortion bans.
“We're engaged in spiritual combat,” Connecticut Catholic Conference executive director Chris Healy told the crowd.
“I'm here to show my love for God, for Mary, for human life,” added Charlene Carson, of Guilford.
A large majority of Connecticut residents support abortion access, according to several recent polls – although a May 2022 Quinnipiac survey found 70% of respondents support parental notification.
This year, state lawmakers are considering a $2 million "Safe Harbor Fund" to cover out-of-state patients' travel and medical costs.
“Financial and geographic barriers should not prohibit people from accessing the essential health care that they need,” said Liz Gustafson, executive director of Pro-Choice Connecticut.
Another bill with bipartisan support would let pharmacists prescribe birth control.
“It can be very difficult to get a doctor's appointment,” said Tim Harvey with Grieb's Pharmacy in Darien. “Anytime you can reduce barriers and make things easier for women, that would be incredible.”
But opponents believe the tide is turning, especially among Black Democrats like state Rep. Treneé McGee (D-West Haven). She was one of a handful of minority lawmakers to vote against last year’s shield law.
“I may look like an anomaly to you,” said McGee, “but there are many Black pro-life women across the world.”
Savannah Craven with Students for Life America sees an opportunity to gain political inroads.
“I actually came across a beautiful Black Lives Matter mural over there,” she said. “But it's like, how can Black Lives Matter if we kill them before they're even born?”

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