Virginia State Capitol

Pro-Abortion Members in Virginia Senate Reverse Women’s Right to Know and Other Protective Laws

RICHMOND–Today, in a split vote of 20-20, with the lieutenant governor breaking the tie, the Virginia Senate passed SB 733. This legislation will overturn reasonable protective legislation that Virginia first passed in 2001 to protect women and their unborn babies from abortion. The U.S Supreme Court has found that such laws are constitutional.

Pro-abortion Democrats in the General Assembly have stripped the law books of legislation that was designed to protect women and give them the information they need to make an informed decision regarding abortion,” said Olivia Gans Turner, president of the Virginia Society of Human Life. “Pro-abortion Democrats have shown that they are more concerned about keeping campaign promises to allow abortionists to practice without oversight.”

Yesterday, the House of Delegates passed HB 980 along party lines. HB 980 and SB 733 reverse the law that required that the Virginia Department of Health to provide written materials that would inform a woman considering abortion about medically accurate facts regarding her pregnancy. These facts included the development of her unborn child as well as types of abortions and risks associated to each. Also reversed was the protective requirement that a woman be given 24 hours to consider the information from the Department of Health and that she be allowed—if she wanted—to see a required ultrasound before making the irreversible decision to abort her baby.

Alarmingly, SB 733 allows nurse practitioners to perform abortions. Reversing protective legislative measures will place more Virginia women in danger. Both surgical abortions and the use of abortion drugs can cause serious, life-threatening complications. 

Regardless of the claims of pro-abortion groups that protective laws are burdensome to women seeking an abortion, the U.S. Supreme Court has never found that reasonable laws like those passed in Virginia in 2001 were “an undue burden.” In addition, the U.S. Supreme Court has never lifted the restriction that only physicians perform abortions.

Last September, in a U.S. District Court decision, Judge Henry Hudson upheld the very requirements that are being destroyed by HB 980 and SB 733. His decision ruled that none of them were burdensome and should be allowed to stand. 

“This is a tragedy for the women of Virginia and their unborn children,” said Turner. “The only ones protected and empowered by the actions of the General Assembly are the abortionists who will be able to pay off their luxury cars by exploiting and deceiving the very women they claim to help.”

Virginia Society for Human Life is the oldest state-wide pro-life organization in the nation with chapters throughout the Commonwealth supporting life issues and the Virginia affiliate of the National Right to Life Committee.

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