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WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama says there's an effort in states across the country to turn back the clock on abortion to the 1950s.

He says at a gala for Planned Parenthood that when politicians turn the abortion-rights group into a punching bag, they're really telling women they're on their own.

Obama says he fought for his health care law to ensure individuals have the right to make their own medical choices. He's asking medical providers and abortion rights supporters to, in his words, "get the word out" about the law's benefits.

He says as long as women have to fight for abortion rights in the U.S., he'll be at their side.

Planned Parenthood says Obama is the first sitting president to address the group in person.

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