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Every Virginia Republican state legislator has taken an anti-abortion stance

Abortion rights are on the ballot in November in Virginia legislative elections.

By Emily Singer - October 06, 2023
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Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin greets supporters during an early voting rally, Thursday Sep. 21, 2023, in Petersburg, Va. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin greets supporters during an early voting rally, Thursday Sep. 21, 2023, in Petersburg, Va. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Every single incumbent Republican running for reelection in Virginia’s upcoming state legislative contests has made public comments against abortion rights, according to a report from the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee, a group that works to elect Democrats to state legislatures across the country.

What’s more, more than two-thirds of the GOP nominees in competitive and noncompetitive seats alike in Virginia have made public statements against abortion, according to the DLCC report, which was obtained by the American Independent Foundation.

Control of both chambers of the Virginia Legislature is up for grabs this November, and the DLCC is warning that if Republicans win control of both the House of Delegates and the Senate, the party will restrict abortion access in the state.

Virginia Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin, who opposes abortion rights, has said he wants to pass a 15-week ban.

Virginia is currently the only state in the South where abortion remains legal through the second trimester of pregnancy, according to the Guttmacher Institute. It is also the only southern state that has not passed new abortion restrictions since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June 2022. That’s because Democrats currently have a narrow majority in the Senate, allowing them to block Youngkin’s proposed 15-week ban.

In the open 17th Senate District, a competitive seat that President Joe Biden carried in 2020 but that Youngkin won in 2021, Republican nominee Emily Brewer has said that she is “pro-life at the moment of conception” and that abortion access in Virginia “has just gone too far.”

“Anything reducing the number of weeks is a step in the right direction from my perspective but that’s a conversation every single member of our chamber is going to have to have with their voters,” Brewer, a current member of the House of Delegates, said in September 2022.

In the open 27th Senate District, another competitive seat that Biden won in 2020 but that Youngkin carried a year later, Republican nominee Tara Durant said in a Facebook post that the day Roe was overturned was “a great day for life.” Durant, a member of the House of Delegates, added that she looked forward to “working with Governor Youngkin and fellow members of the General Assembly to affirm protections for the unborn, and supporting and caring for mothers in the Commonwealth.”

Over in the House of Delegates, Baxter Ennis, the GOP nominee in the competitive 89th House District, vowed to vote for Youngkin’s anti-abortion legislation.

Andrew Pittman, the Republican nominee in the competitive 94th House District, tweeted in June 2022, “We must end abortion,” and said in a 2021 tweet, “Abortion is murder. Period,” along with the hashtag #StopAbortion.

“Overall, of the 116 Republicans running this year in Virginia, zero have gone on the record to say they will protect reproductive rights for Virginians or oppose new restrictions on abortion access, making it clear what the consequences will be if Republicans win a legislative majority this fall,” the DLCC said in its report.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.


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