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Hundreds pack Indiana Statehouse during abortion legislation debate

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Protesters on both sides of the abortion debate made their voices heard Monday during rallies in and around the Indiana Statehouse as lawmakers debated a new bill that would further ban abortion in the state.

“We’re advocating. We’re talking to our elected officials. We’re flooding their offices with phone calls, emails,” said Lakimba DeSadier, the state director of Planned Parenthood.

Abortion rights advocates fear Hoosier women will have to travel hundreds of miles to receive care if abortion is further banned in Indiana, but some anti-abortion activists want a complete ban on abortion with no exceptions.

Analese Schrank, of Greenfield, was among hundreds in the state’s capital protesting. “Eighteen years ago, my parents almost had me aborted. I shouldn’t be here right now,” .

Schrank believes a woman or teenager should carry a baby to term even if she is a victim of rape or incest. “The fact is that adoption is always an answer. A lot of people forget about that you can put your child up for adoption.”

Kristin Kohn, owner of the Silver in the City gift shops in Carmel and Indianapolis, is among several hundred Hoosier business owners who signed a letter opposing any kind of abortion bans. “Women are a really big and important part of our economy. Having the ability to access education and employment, and access to abortion helps make sure that can happen.”

Planned Parenthood asked people to comeback Tuesday and testify against Senate Bill 1, Special Session.

Right to Life Indianapolis is also planning a rally at 11 a.m. Tuesday in the Statehouse.