Pro-lifers flock to Capitol for 44th MCCL March for Life, urge lawmakers to protect unborn children
ST. PAUL — A passionate crowd of Minnesotans descended on the State Capitol today to urge lawmakers to protect unborn children. Mild weather and high hopes for passage of further protections for the unborn and their mothers drew a large crowd to the largest annual event at the Capitol. The Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life (MCCL) March for Life commemorates the millions of lives lost to abortion.
The 44th annual MCCL March for Life marks the anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court's Jan. 22, 1973, Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton decisions that have resulted in the deaths of more than 625,000 unborn Minnesota children (Minnesota Department of Health), and more than 59 million unborn babies nationwide. "All of us, working together as MCCL, have protected thousands and thousands of babies through effective education and legislation—and some of them stand among us today!" said MCCL Treasurer Cathy Blaeser as she announced MCCL's 2017 legislative agenda to the huge crowd gathered from across Minnesota. More needs to be done this year, she added. "The State of Minnesota pays for abortions and it is time to say, 'No more!'" MCCL's 2017 legislative agenda calls for the Legislature to ban taxpayer funded abortions and to defund Planned Parenthood, the state's largest abortionist. The state has paid for 77,000 abortions at a cost of $22.5 million. Taxpayer funded abortions now represent 43 percent of all abortions performed in Minnesota. MCCL also seeks the licensing and inspection of abortion facilities, which currently are exempt from licensing and inspection required of other outpatient surgical centers across the state. Such minimal oversight would help ensure a degree of safety for women entering abortion facilities. Current legislation is authored by Rep. Deb Kiel, R-Crookston, and Sen. Michelle Fischbach, R-Paynesville. MCCL's pro-life agenda also calls for lawmakers to end abortions at the point when the unborn child is able to feel pain, which experts estimate conservatively at 20 weeks of development. Legislative leaders addressed today's crowd and pledged their support for pro-life efforts. "Your pro-life majority in the Minnesota Senate will work with MCCL to bring about the day when abortion is unthinkable in Minnesota, and mothers and their babies are protected," said Senate President Michelle Fischbach. Speaker of the Minnesota House Kurt Daudt stated, "With your prayers and your work, I am confident that this year we can end taxpayer funding of abortion, we can defund Planned Parenthood, and we can provide the most basic protections for women by making sure that abortion clinics are licensed and inspected." "We must remain strong and we must never, never give up the fight for life," declared House Majority Leader Joyce Peppin. "We must be unyielding, unwavering and unafraid to continue our work to end abortion." Many of Minnesota's pro-life elected officials, including state legislators, were in attendance and were introduced during the brief program on the Capitol steps. Minnesota's pro-life Members of Congress Jason Lewis, Erik Paulsen, Tom Emmer and Collin Peterson sent written greetings to the March. View photos of today’s MCCL March for Life and from past marches on the MCCL website.