Michele Rayner launches abortion rally tour through CD 13
Michelle Rayner takes to the road for a fight over reproductive rights.

Rayner Crist
Polls show a majority of Americans support abortion access.

Michele Rayner is taking her congressional campaign on an abortion rally tour through Florida’s 13th Congressional District this month.

Rayner, who is running to fill the seat being vacated by gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist, jumped into action hours after a draft opinion suggesting the Supreme Court would overturn Roe v. Wade was leaked to POLITICO. Rayner organized a rally outside the Pinellas County Courthouse in St. Petersburg. The rally drew about 200 supporters of reproductive rights including Crist and her fellow Democratic Primary opponents Ben Diamond and Eric Lynn.

Rayner told a fiery crowd it was time to bring the battle to the ballot box.

“We’ve got to make sure we vote like never before. Because our very lives depend on who we vote for,” Rayner told the crowd. “We must vote. The Republicans have shown us time and time again they care not about us. They care not about our bodies. They care not about the constitution.

“So, what are we gonna do?” She asked the crowd.

“Vote” they shouted back, launching into a call and response volley that increased in pressure and tension like rising mercury.

On Friday, Rayner announced on Twitter and in a news release that Tuesday was just the beginning. The rally is as much a push to mobilize voters as it is to call on lawmakers to codify the protections offered to women in the Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey decisions. Most polling shows Americans support abortion access. And October 2020 Quinnipiac poll found that 68% of voters agreed with the Roe decision while 23% disagreed.

“This time, we’re going to make sure it’s permanent. When the SCOTUS draft opinion was leaked to the public, it was a shock to an already overburdened society,” Rayner said. “That is why we’re coming together, especially in this critical district which we must hold on to, to make our voices heard and make sure that the right-wing onslaught on our rights does not go any further.”

The tour kicked off with a stop in Clearwater’s Crest Lake Park Saturday. Next, it will go to:

Dunedin City Hall Monday at 6 p.m.; the Palm Harbor Library Wednesday at 5 p.m.; The Tarpon Springs Cultural Center Friday and 5 p.m.; Philippe Park in Safety Harbor on May 14 at 10 a.m.; the Indian Rocks Beach Library on May 15 at 5 p.m.; Bear Creek Park in St. Petersburg on May 17 at 6 p.m.; and Pinellas Park City Hall May 18 at 5:30 p.m.

Daniel Figueroa IV

Bronx, NY —> St. Pete, Fla. Just your friendly, neighborhood journo junkie with a penchant for motorcycles and Star Wars. Daniel has spent the last decade covering Tampa Bay and Florida for the Ledger of Lakeland, Tampa Bay Times, and WMNF. You can reach Daniel Figueroa IV at [email protected]


7 comments

  • Impeach Biden

    May 7, 2022 at 4:52 pm

    Yes the uneducated amongst us. Just like the “Don’t Say Gay” law in Florida. So the Supreme Court is considering giving the power to the states, where it belongs. Not to worry, abortion clinics will be like 7-11’s, on every street corner in Kalifornia and New York among many others. I love the “my body, my choice” chant. This coming from the same group demanding I get vaccinated. Hilarious really.

    Reply

    • Anti state

      May 8, 2022 at 4:05 am

      Ask if it’s like you and vaccination we will just ignore whatever the states do as well.

      Reply

  • Tony Nelson

    May 7, 2022 at 6:28 pm

    A baby killing tour straight to Hell.

    Reply

  • Dave Stites

    May 7, 2022 at 7:09 pm

    IRRESPONSIBLE WOMEN should try some self control, conception protection and prevention meds to AVOID UNWANTED PREGNANCIES instead of killing life in the womb at great medical expense to RESPONSIBLE TAXPAYERS.
    WE ARE NOT YOUR PROBLEM! YOU ARE!

    Reply

  • Richard

    May 7, 2022 at 10:48 pm

    What is meant by “overburden society”?

    Reply

  • Conservative always

    May 8, 2022 at 8:34 pm

    REPORTER: “Does [Biden] support any limits on abortion?”
    PSAKI: No
    REPORTER: “Does the president support abortion until the moment of birth?”
    PSAKI: Yes
    So today’s Democrat Party is endorsing and advocating abortion up until birth. Good luck with your elections.

    Reply

  • Terri

    May 10, 2022 at 8:12 am

    You’re a reporter, so tell me how many late term abortions are happening & why did they happen. They’re not happening after the point of viable delivery. If they’re late term it’s because either the mothers life was in danger or there was a deformity that wouldn’t allow for survivability. Quit with the fear mongering that women are having abortions at 8 and 9 months.

    Reply

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