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Abortion Opponents and Abortion Rights Supporters Reflect on Roe Anniversary

Anti-abortion activists gathered at the state capitol Wednesday to ponder the 33rd anniversary this month of the Supreme Court decision Roe V. Wade. KSMU's Missy Shelton reports on how abortion opponents and abortion rights supporters feel about the anniversary.

More than 150 opponents of abortion gathered in the capitol rotunda for a ceremony marking the 33rd anniversary of the Supreme Court's landmark Roe V. Wade decision.

Springfield resident and the chairman of the Missouri Right to Life Political Action Committee Dave Plemmons was there.

Activists on the other side of the abortion debate say they too mark the anniversary of Roe V. Wade.

Democratic Senator Joan Bray.

Bray's prevention program would direct state funds into women's health clinics for family planning and annual check-ups.

This has been a point of contention for several years.

Abortion opponents have succeeded in blocking family planning funds because they say the money could go to clinics that refer patients to abortion providers or are affiliated with abortion clinics.

Susan Klein, legislative liaison for Missouri Right to Life says she hopes lawmakers will approve a measure that will permanently block state funds for family planning from going to these clinics.

Abortion opponents say that while it's important to reflect on the events that have transpired since the Roe decision, it's also important to look to the future.

Dave Plemmons with Missouri Right to Life says there's another issue that warrants attention.

The question of whether or not to allow early stem cell research also called somatic cell nuclear transfer is one that has divided the anti-abortion community.

Democratic Senator Joan Bray says she supports allowing somatic cell nuclear transfer because it could lead to cures.

Those who oppose somatic cell nuclear transfer or embryonic stem cell research say there are other kinds of stem cell research that's ethical and will produce cures.

Dave Plemmons says he supports non-embryonic stem cell research.

With stem cell research and other abortion-related issues facing the state, the anniversary of Roe V. Wade provokes strong feelings on both sides.

Senator Joan Bray says she hopes the decision will still be standing in another 33 years.

And abortion opponents say they won't be giving up either.