Now that the Supreme Court has overturned Roe v Wade and sent abortion law back to states where it should always have been, Governor Youngkin would like a new law passed in Virginia that would ban abortion after 15 weeks, but he realizes that may not be possible in the current divided General Assembly. The current law in Virginia bans abortion after 25 weeks.
The governor has asked 4 pro-life legislators in Richmond to write a bill banning abortion after 20 weeks, rather than 15 weeks because he thinks 20 weeks may be more viable in the Democrat-controlled Senate. The 4 legislators are Sen. Siobhan Dunnavant (Henrico), an obstetrician; Sen. Steve Newman (Bedford); Del. Kathy Byron (Lynchburg) and Del. Margaret Ransone (R-Westmoreland). (The law could be changed again when Republicans take over the state Senate after next year’s election. They already control the House of Delegates.) The Governor supports exemptions in the cases of rape, incest or when the mother’s life is endangered.
From the Washingtonpost.com:
“Virginians do want fewer abortions as opposed to more abortions,” Youngkin said Friday morning during a meeting with reporters, editors and editorial writers at The Washington Post, moments after the court’s decision overturning Roe v. Wade was announced. “I am not someone who is going to jump in and try to push us apart … There is a place we can come together.”
Though he emphasized his personal opposition to abortion, Youngkin said he recognized that there is a spectrum of beliefs in Virginia and acknowledged that 20 weeks could wind up being a point of compromise. “I also represent all Virginians,” he said. But, he added, “I believe the place we should be able to get to is a 15-week pain threshold.”
Similar laws have been passed in Florida and Mississippi.
More from the Washington Post:
““We’ve got a process in Virginia to work through,” Youngkin said. “I am a pro-life governor, I also am very, very aware of Virginia. … A governor can’t do it on his own. And it’s going to require … work across the aisle. And so we’ve got to work over the next few months to find a place that we can land.”
He compared that political reality to his efforts to pass a gas tax holiday, which has been repeatedly rebuffed by the state Senate. “I believe we should have a three-month gas tax holiday. And I can’t get the Senate to do it. And bottom line is that one of the things that I firmly believe that government needs to do is deliver results and I gotta deliver results,” Youngkin said.”