Yashica Robinson
Alabama doctor describes immediate impact of Roe v. Wade decision on her clinic
03:41 - Source: CNN
CNN  — 

Abortion-rights protesters continued to voice their fury and anguish nationwide Saturday following the seismic ruling by the US Supreme Court to eliminate the federal constitutional right to an abortion.

On Friday, the Court overturned the 1973 ruling known as Roe v. Wade, sparking protests that are expected to extend throughout the weekend.

Smaller gatherings of people celebrating the ruling are also taking place.

As states started enacting abortion bans and some clinics stopped offering the procedure, abortion-rights advocates took to the streets in major cities.

“It’s like seeing the train coming toward you,” said Julia Kaluta, 24, one of many abortion-rights advocates gathered in New York City. “And you finally get hit by it. And it still hurts more than you ever thought.”

Riot police surround the Arizona Capitol after protesters reached the front of the Arizona Senate building following the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade on Friday.

More demonstrations are expected Saturday and Sunday in cities big and small, including in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Illinois, Texas, New Mexico, California and many others.

“It’s a betrayal against women … it’s a giant step backwards … It opens the door for other rights and freedoms to be threatened,” said Natasha Mitchell, 41, of Denver. “I’m fortunate that I live in a state that respects the reproductive rights of women but I fear for women who don’t.”

Colorado Democratic Gov. Jared Polis signed a bill into law in April, codifying the right to an abortion in the state.

Police use tear gas to disperse crowds

President Joe Biden described it as a “sad day” for the US. He plans to “continue to find solutions” to ensure abortion rights, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters Saturday. She declined to offer details on potential executive actions regarding abortion that the administration is weighing.

In Phoenix, law enforcement used tear gas late Friday to disperse a crowd of abortion-rights supporters after they “repeatedly pounded on the glass doors of the State Senate Building,” Arizona Department of Public Safety spokesperson Bart Graves told CNN.

In Eugene, Oregon, 10 people were arrested on Friday night during a demonstration dubbed a “Night of Rage” in response to the ruling, according to a release from Eugene police. Those arrested ranged in age from 18 to 29 years old, according to the release. Nine people were charged with disorderly conduct, one of whom was also charged with resisting arrest and another with harassment, police said.

Police said demonstrators started gathering Friday night just before 9:30 p.m. in front of a medical building in Eugene’s downtown. The crowd grew to more than 75 people who blocked roadways and vehicles, police said. Demonstrators at one point were seen throwing rocks or other objects and an unknown individual also threw smoke bombs at police officers, according to the release.

As news of the ruling emerged Friday morning, abortion-rights advocates and opponents also gathered outside the Supreme Court in Washington, DC.

One man – standing amid placards including the messages “Roe is dead” and “I am the post-Roe generation” – sprayed champagne in the air above others who were celebrating.

US Capitol Police (USCP) arrested two people on Saturday afternoon for the destruction of property after they were accused of “throwing paint over the fence by the U.S. Supreme Court,” USCP tweeted.

USCP told CNN the two people arrested were Nicholas Salvador Saint Amour and Leah Johnson.

As abortion rights protesters gathered outside the Supreme Court on Saturday, USCP tweeted it was working to “help demonstrators with heat issues” by bringing in cooling buses and additional people to help. So far, roughly 12 people have been helped, they said.

In New York City, many demonstrators gathered in Washington Square Park to protest the ruling, even though New York state law will remain in place to protect abortion rights.

There were some anti-abortion activists on hand, but they kept a low profile and there were no confrontations seen by the CNN crew walking with the protesters. At least 20 people in the city were “taken into custody with charges pending,” after demonstrators marched in protest of the decision, according to the New York Police Department (NYPD).

No further details were provided on the arrests.