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Iowa City residents participate in national Planned Parenthood protests

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CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) -

A National Protest against planned Parenthood had over 280 cities across the country protesting today.

Iowa City's Planned Parenthood location was one that participated.

Many people gathered with signs and at one point, around 80 people were counted .

Some protesters said the increased awareness of Planned Parenthood came from multiple controversial videos that were released claiming the organization sells aborted baby parts for money.

"It heightened my awareness to stand more against what planned parenthood is doing, it's no different than what Nazi Germany was doing back in the Holocaust years," said Sanjee Ang, one of the protesters.

"I was like almost afraid to watch them just because of how disgusting and disturbing that is," said Zach Ilten, who was also protesting.

Some people even want justice.

"These people should really be brought to justice you know, they're gonna answer, they have to be accountable. They're gonna answer the government, they're gonna answer to God," said Ang.

Many presidential candidates have spoken on their stance to the issue, wanting to defund the organization which receives federal tax dollars.

People I talked to felt so strongly about being pro life, they said it will directly effect their vote in the upcoming presidential election. 

"Definitely because I don't think we have any rights unless you know, you start with the basic right which is the right to life," said Stephanie Zesingbalke, the President of the Board of Directors for Johnson County Right to Life.

Ilten, who just had his first child last week, agreed. He showed me a picture of his baby at 20 weeks old in the womb.

"She has limbs, she has a head, she has a face and how this can't be anything else but a person," he said.

Ilten told me being pro life is something he came to through his faith in God, a faith many people at the protest were sharing as bibles were being read, and the group was praying.

We reached out to Planned Parenthood today regarding the nationwide protest, they sent us the following statements.

Statement from Planned Parenthood of the Heartland:

"Planned Parenthood staff remains focused on delivering the absolute best care to our patients, no matter what. This weekend's rallies are just another attempt to shame and intimidate women making private health care decisions, and the staff who provide that care. We are proud to provide affordable, high-quality health care to 37,700 women and men at our 13 health centers in Iowa. We will not be distracted from our mission."

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