Politics, religion, and abortion were all discussed on Saturday during the March for Life.
COLUMBIA, S.C. — On Saturday, hundreds gathered for South Carolina’s 50th March for Life outside of the State House.
South Carolina Citizens for Life founded the event and had dozens of churches represented. It drew people from around the state, including Mary and Karen from Charleston.
“We came out here to save lives, to save our babies,” Karen said.
After a short walk to the State House steps, speakers, including Attorney General Alan Wilson, Rep. Joe Wilson, and Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette, spoke. Evette highlighted the work her office has done after a year of abortion legislation in the state.
“In our executive budget, we’ve asked for $500,000 to go to children’s trust. $250,000 of that will get matched 3-to-1 by the federal government,” she said. “Right now, the program, OBGYNs refer an at-risk mom to the children’s trust program. A nurse will come out to their home; they’ll help them when it comes to prenatal care to help with the baby when it’s born to helping them find options with careers.”
In 2023, the legislature passed a new version of the fetal heartbeat law that essentially bans abortion after six weeks. After a long battle, the South Carolina Supreme Court took on the bill to decide whether it was constitutional. In August 2023, the court decided 4-1 to uphold the law. Evette said she sees the last year as progress.
“If you save one life, it’s a win. Here in South Carolina, when the first Heartbeat Bill got locked up in the Supreme Court, and then the Supreme Court voted against it, we saw out-of-state abortions rise at astronomical levels,” she said. “That was not good for South Carolina; to be an abortion destination state was not what we wanted to be labeled as. If this law didn’t take everybody where they wanted to, know that you are saving more lives today than you did before it passed.”
For Jonathan Bruce, the day was about spreading his message and connecting with others in Columbia.
“What I believe is we should come to a consensus of understanding of what life is,” he said. “I believe if we can come to an agreement of where life starts, we can actually get somewhere.”
Mary and Karen said they came to spread awareness of available resources for mothers in the state.
“That baby doesn’t have a choice but a mother has a choice,” Karen said. “There are so many people out there today that want children but can’t have children.”
Planned Parenthood did not respond to a request for comment on the rally.