Vice President Pence will join Friday’s March for Life, a move from the White House considered historic by march organizers. President Ronald Reagan made a video for the march in 1988 and President George W. Bush called in to the march in 2008, but no president or vice president has spoken at the march before, according to a march spokeswoman. Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s senior counselor, will also speak at the march.
March organizers say they expect tens of thousands of people to march at the event that annually draws activists from across the country. This year, organizers believe they will see a surge of energy with the ascension of a president who is expected to move forward on antiabortion policies, including defunding Planned Parenthood and appointing an antiabortion Supreme Court justice.
Pence, who has called himself an “evangelical Catholic,” has long been a hero among antiabortion activists and as governor of Indiana signed what was considered some of the strictest laws on abortion.
Ahead of the election, activists were divided over whether to openly support Trump, who they believed was more appealing than Hillary Clinton. Activists were especially thrilled by his selection of Pence, who signed a law that banned abortions based on gender or disability.
During the vice-presidential debate in October, Pence brought up his opposition to abortion by paraphrasing the biblical verse Jeremiah 1:5: “Before you were formed in the womb, I knew you.”
During an interview with ABC News’s David Muir that aired Wednesday night, President Trump voiced concerns that the press doesn’t cover the March for Life.
“You’re going to have a lot of people coming on Friday,” Trump said. “And I will say this, and I didn’t realize this. But I was told you will have a very large crowd of people. I don’t know as large or larger. Some people said it will be larger, pro-life people, and they say the press doesn’t cover them.”
The Washington Post has covered the March for Life every year for the past decade, according to archives.