A pro-choice march and rally is set to take place this weekend in St. Paul in the wake of the Supreme Court overturning the federal right to privacy that legalized abortion in the case of Roe v. Wade.
Organized by UnRestrict Minnesota, the march will begin at 11 a.m. Sunday at St. Paul College, according to a release. Protesters will march at noon to the Capitol where a rally and program are expected to take place beginning at 1 p.m.
Gov. Tim Walz, Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan, Attorney General Keith Ellison and other congressional, state and local leaders are expected to speak on Sunday.
Walz and Ellison are up for re-election in November, and have warned that should Republicans win control of the Legislature and the Governorship, Minnesota will likely follow neighboring states in implementing abortion bans.
Walz said in June that the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade won't prevent abortions, but instead make them more dangerous.
“All it did was make it more dangerous and less accessible, especially to the people who need it. [The order] states that we will use all authority of this office to decline to extradite people who are charged under other states’ laws that criminalize providing or obtaining reproductive health care services,” he said to reporters on June 25.
According to organizers, the rally's purpose is to "demand our state be a leader in abortion access" after the overturning of Roe v. Wade last month. Gov. Walz signed an executive order protecting the right to an abortion in the state as a response to the Supreme Court ruling.
Minnesota has its own legal precedent guaranteeing abortion access in the form of Doe v. Gomez.
Minnesota is one of 22 states where abortion access is at least "mostly acceptable," according to Planned Parenthood. Abortion is legal in the state up to the point of viability – when the fetus can survive outside the womb – though there is confusion over when that point is, as MinnPost reports.
What's more, Minnesota's right to choose laws have actually been strengthened in the past week, when a district judge also ruled that a number of Minnesota laws restricting abortions are unconstitutional.
Laws that require a 24-hour waiting period for abortion after consulting with a physician, a two-parent notification requirement for patients under the age of 18, an informed consent requirement that entails mandatory counseling of pregnant individuals, and the requirement that abortions after the first trimester be performed in a hospital were repealed as a result.
Last week, thousands of people marched in Washington, D.C. to the White House to protest over the reversal of abortion rights. Marches and rallies in support of a reversal of the ruling have been seen across the nation, the New York Times reports.