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House GOP Leaders To Play Smaller Role in March for Life This Year

House GOP Leaders To Play Smaller Role in March for Life This Year

January 17, 2013 — Neither House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) nor House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) will attend this year's March for Life, an annual antiabortion-rights rally marking the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, The Hill's "Healthwatch" reports. The landmark Supreme Court decision was issued 40 years ago this month.

Boehner will instead provide a pre-recorded video address, while Cantor is not expected to speak in person or via video. Both GOP leaders spoke at last year's march, but they will not attend this year's event on Jan. 25 because the House will not be in session, their spokespeople said.

Other current and former lawmakers have been announced as speakers, including former presidential candidate Rick Santorum (R) and Reps. Chris Smith (R-N.J.) and Diane Black (R-Tenn.). Additionally, Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-Ill.) will speak via video.

According to Jeanne Monahan, president of the March for Life Education and Defense Fund, many other lawmakers will be in attendance. The march draws as many as 250,000 people to the National Mall, and attendance is expected to be stronger than usual this year, given the 40-year anniversary, "Healthwatch" reports (Viebeck, "Healthwatch," The Hill, 1/15).