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Thousands Descend On D.C. To Mark Anniversary Of Roe V. Wade

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Renee Joseph of Frederick, Md., marches at an anti-abortion rally outside the White House on Monday.
Patrick Madden
Renee Joseph of Frederick, Md., marches at an anti-abortion rally outside the White House on Monday.

On the anniversary of the Supreme Court decision Roe v. Wade, the nation's capital remains the backdrop for the fight over abortion rights. But two recent developments are reigniting the debate here locally as well.

In Lafayette Park, just outside the White House, Renee Joseph of Frederick, Md., gets her keyboard ready for the anti-abortion rally that's about to start.

She says the recent decision by Dr. Leroy Carhart, a well-known late-term abortion provider, to set up his practice in Germantown, Md., has galvanized her and many others in the area to get more involved.

"It's not like you can say, 'Oh, that happened in California, oh, that happened in Idaho.' This happened like 30 minutes maybe from where you live, and so it brings it right in front of your face, and you can't hide it. You can no longer ignore it," Joseph says.

Abortion rights opponents aren't the only ones energized right now.

Advocates for abortion rights are blasting a proposal by the Republicans in Congress to block D.C.'s ability to spend local dollars on abortions for low income women. The ban had been in place for decades, but was lifted in 2009 by the Democrats in Congress and President Obama.

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