RICHMOND, VA – In today’s meeting of the Virginia Senate’s Education and Health Committee, Democrats defeated three separate GOP attempts to restrict Virginians’ right to choose.
Senator Dunnavant’s SB 1483 would have restricted abortions after 24 weeks. Senator Newman’s SB 1385 would have restricted abortions after 15 weeks. Senator Hackworth’s SB 1284 would have made all abortions illegal, with limited exceptions.
“This is an incredible victory for women across the Commonwealth,” said Susan Swecker, Chairwoman of the Democratic Party of Virginia. “These extreme Republican attempts to restrict access to reproductive healthcare have met their fate at the hands of the Democratic Senate majority members, who have fought tooth-and-nail to protect women from these draconian restrictions.”
Overwhelmingly, Virginians are opposed to any restrictions being placed on abortion. Per the Pew Research Center, 55% of Virginians think abortion should be “legal in all/most cases.”
Despite the clear will of Virginians, Governor Youngkin and the Virginia GOP have continued to push for policies that restrict the reproductive freedom of Virginian women. In his budget proposal, Governor Youngkin requested $50,000 be earmarked to imprison women who receive abortions, as well as the doctors who performed them.
Senate Democrats were empowered to defeat these three bills following the election of Senator Aaron Rouse in SD-07 earlier this month, whose victory in a formerly GOP-held seat was widely seen as a referendum on the GOP’s plans to restrict access to abortion.