U.S. President Donald Trump attends the 47th annual March for Life on the National Mall in Washington on Friday. Photo by Yuri Gripas/UPI | License Photo
Jan. 24 (UPI) -- President Donald Trump became the first U.S. leader to attend an anti-abortion rally Friday, telling participants that "unborn children have never had a stronger defender in the White House."
The 47th annual March for Life took place on the National Mall, drawing thousands of activists.
This year's event marked the 47th anniversary of Roe vs. Wade, the landmark 1973 Supreme Court ruling that legalized abortion.
"When it comes to abortion ... Democrats have embraced the most radical and extreme positions," Trump told the crowd.
In addition to touting his appointments of judges who share his view, he used the platform to comment on the ongoing impeachment trial at the nearby Capitol.
"They are coming after me because I am fighting for you," Trump said.
He called on women to vote for him and others like him who support their cause. He also said every life is "worth protecting" and called mothers "heroes."
March for Life President Jeanne Mancini said the group was "deeply honored" by Trump's appearance.
"From the appointment of pro-life judges and federal workers, to cutting taxpayer funding for abortions here and abroad, to calling for an end to late-term abortions, President Trump and his administration have been consistent champions for life and their support for the March for Life has been unwavering," she said.
Crowds gathered on the National Mall late Friday morning and marched along Constitution Avenue. Vice President Mike Pence attended the march three years ago.
Pollster Gallup posted a survey this week that found more Americans than ever are now dissatisfied with some aspect of U.S. abortion laws. Fifty-eight percent of respondents, it said, feel the laws are either too restrictive or too loose.
Republican-controlled states like Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi and Ohio have passed some of the United States' strictest abortion laws over the past two years -- actions proponents hope will ultimately put the issue before the Supreme Court and challenge abortion's legality in the United States.