WASHINGTON – Thousands of people marched to the Supreme Court and the Capitol on Saturday to demand that the justices and Congress ensure abortion rights and access, one of many Women’s March rallies around the country that attracted several hundred thousand people who protested laws enacted by Texas and many other states restricting the right to an abortion.

“We can and will show the Supreme Court and anyone else threatening our freedom that there are more people standing with us on the side of justice than with them,” said Rachel O’Leary Carmona, Women’s March Executive Director, in her opening speech at Freedom Plaza near the White House.

Protestor Daniela Flores

Daniela Flores from Costa Rica stands in the back during the opening speeches, holding her banner high. (Hannah Zhihan Jiang/MNS)

According to Carmona, 120,000 people in 650 locations around the country marched at the rallies; Women’s March tweeted that the D.C. rally attracted about 5,000 people.

“Austin is popping. Houston is popping. New York is popping. Chicago is popping. LA is popping. 650 marches all across the country,” said Carmona.

Before the march began, Carmona reminded the crowd to wear masks and social distance.

The outcry for abortion justice was ignited by the record number of abortion bans enacted this year and the the Supreme Court’s refusal to block the Texas law that restricts abortion after about six weeks of pregnancy while a lawsuit claiming the law is illegal works its way through the courts.

According to the Guttmacher Institute, as of July 1, 90 abortion restrictions have been enacted this year, more than in any year since the 1973 landmark Roe v. Wade ruling by the Supreme Court.

“I am here because of the rights. This is just the beginning. This is not about our babies’ lives. This is about our social strength,” said Daniela Flores, who grew up in Costa Rica and now lives in Washington.

Texas activists at the Supreme Court

Activists from Texas perform a dance in front of the Supreme Court in support of abortion justice. (Hannah Zhihan Jiang/MNS)

Flores said she had an abortion when she was five months pregnant because she was told her fetus was not viable and continuing the pregnancy could result in her death.

Several dozen counter-protesters who oppose abortion rights met the marchers when they arrived at the Supreme Court, shouting and waving signs such as “I Am the Pro-Life Generation.”

The Women’s March crowd shouted back, chanting, “My body, my choice” and “Roe v. Wade is here to stay.”

“I am a woman. I am interested in women’s rights. I thought I needed to be here,” said Sherri Bledsoe who flew from Orlando, Florida, to attend the march in Washington.

On Friday, more than 50 people from Texas demonstrated in front of the Supreme Court in support of abortion rights. Several had testified the day before at a House committee hearing on abortion rights.









Protesters march in front of the U.S. Capitol, demanding stronger safeguards of federal abortion rights and in states with conservative decision-makers in particular. They also call on the Supreme Court not to overturn Roe v. Wade. (Linus Hoeller/MNS)









The protesters meet a few dozen counter-protesters, who are calling for tighter restrictions on abortions. The two groups had a verbal standoff. (Linus Hoeller/MNS)









The protest was attended by a broad variety of people, including this elderly couple supporting greater freedom of choice for women in America. (Linus Hoeller/MNS)










“I had my son when I was 17. We want our kids to have the choice,” said Brandi Robert from Richmond, Virginia. She is marching with her family. (Hannah Zhihan Jiang/MNS)










“I aborted a little more than three months ago: the most horrible decision of my life because I did want to be a mother and my baby girl was sick,” said Daniela Flores from Costa Rica, “I had to make the decision that will take care of most lives and in this case this is mine.” (Hannah Zhihan Jiang/MNS)










“I am from Orlando. I could have done a march there but I want to be at the heart of it,” said Sherri Bledsoe. Her friend took a photo of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s graffiti from two years ago and she made it into a poster. (Hannah Zhihan Jiang/MNS)











“My therapist told me to express myself,” said Sonia Glenn from Mexico living in Virginia. She made a dress out of the shape of a vagina and protests in front of the Supreme Court. (Hannah Zhihan Jiang/MNS)











“When I had my abortion, I felt completely alone in my experience. But today, being at the Supreme Court, surrounded by my fellow Texans and hearing everyone’s powerful stories. I feel more loved than ever,” said Sarah from Texas at a demonstration in front of the Supreme Court on Oct.1. (Hannah Zhihan Jiang/MNS)











“I was 17 when I had an abortion. I had to go ask a judge, a complete stranger for permission. I had to prove to the judge that I was a good student and mature enough to have an abortion. Every adult that had the power to help me used it against me,” said Anna, an advocacy fellow at Jane’s Due Process. She is sitting for an interview with Medill News Service across the street from the Supreme Court on Oct.1. (Hannah Zhihan Jiang/MNS)