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Hundreds Rally Outside Philadelphia City Hall To Defend Roe V. Wade

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Outrage over a leaked draft majority opinion from the U.S. Supreme Court showing the justices plan to overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade case. If it's overturned, the future of abortion rights would lie with individual states.

An emergency rally was held at City Hall in Philadelphia Tuesday evening. Hundreds of people have showed up for the rally.

Local Leaders Respond After Report Of Draft Opinion Suggests Supreme Court May Overturn Roe V. Wade

Organizers say it took a mass movement to win Roe v. Wade and it will take a similar movement to defend it.

Organizers are calling for every state across the country to hold similar rallies.

Chanting for choice and standing up for abortion rights.

"I am outraged that our rights are being taken away," a protester said.

"I feel like it's a safety issue for a lot of women if they don't have the access to abortions they are going to end up find a way to have abortions and they are gonna end up hurting themselves," a woman said.

If Roe is overturned, women would lose their federally-protected right to an abortion as early as June, something that has been intact since 1973. Twenty-six states are poised to outlaw abortion or weaken access, and 16 are in the other direction with laws designed to protect rights.

"I remember when Roe v. Wade became law. I was 15 years old, now here we are 50 years later. Why are we having this conversation?" a protester said.

Those who attended the protests were touched by the turnout, fighting for what they believe in.

"I think it's absolutely amazing and I think it's really positive and really peaceful and it just gives us all hope," one protester said.

There has been no shortage of discussion across the nation about the leak from the Supreme Court. We wanted to find out the potential impact here in Pennsylvania.

States like New Jersey and Delaware have laws to protect abortion rights. But there's no such legal protection in the Keystone State.

"I don't think there will be a rush to ban abortions after Roe is overturned, if Roe is overturned. But I think that' there's not gonna be a rush to appeal the abortion restrictions that are on Pennsylvania books," Temple law professor Rachel Rebouche said.

The GOP currently has the majority in the Pennsylvania House and Senate, but Gov. Tom Wolf has made it clear he will veto any legislation to overturn the current statute.

On Wednesday at 11 a.m. at Independence Mall, Wolf will hold a press conference to outline how he plans to do so.

"Let's remind ourselves that everybody believes in choice. The only difference separating people in this area is who's going to make the choice," Wolf said.

Tom Stevens, President and CEO of Pro Life Union of Greater Philadelphia, says they've been waiting for an end to Roe v. Wade for 50 years, saying the right to life is fundamental even in some of the most extreme circumstances.

"Rape is the most horrific thing in the entire world but two wrongs don't make a right," Stevens said.

We reached out to Sen. Pat Toomey for comment. He did not respond specifically to the potential overturn of Roe V. Wade but said in a statement: "While the motive behind this leak is unclear, I'm concerned it was released as a political ploy to pressure justices to change their views when the rule of law — not public opinion — should determine the outcome and reasoning of a case."

Democratic Sen. Bob Casey released his own statement, saying in part, he is concerned about overturning almost 50 years of legal precedent, and Congress should be doing more to support women and families.

CBS3's Jan Carabeo, Alecia Reid, and Kerri Corrado contributed to this report.

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