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February 3, 2012

Pro-Life Advance and Setback as Va. Focuses on Abortion

State Senate passes ultrasound bill, but committee kills bill ending abortions at 20 weeks.

va-legislature.jpg

For only the second time since the Civil War, Republicans control both houses of Virginia’s General Assembly, and the state’s abortion laws might change drastically because of it.

On Wednesday, the state Senate narrowly passed a bill that requires an ultrasound for women seeking an abortion, signaling the probable passage of the bill into state law.

Twenty-one people in the 40-member Senate approved the bill, which mandates an ultrasound but does not require the woman to view the image. Proponents argued the requirement is important because it determines the fetus’s gestational age; opponents said the requirement imposes unnecessary costs and acts as a “thinly veiled attempt” to restrict abortion access. The House of Delegates is expected to pass the measure, and Governor Robert McDonnell has already said he will sign it into law.

Meanwhile,a bill that prohibits abortions after 20 weeks failed to make it out of the Health and Education Committee in the Senate Thursday, effectively stalling it. Other bills still in the Assembly’s consideration include giving legal rights to fetuses from conception on, ending subsidies for poor women to abort fetuses with serious birth defects, and requiring insurers that cover abortions to also offer policies that do not.

Should the sonogram bill pass, Virginia would join six other states with similar laws. Last month, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a Texas law requiring abortion providers to perform an ultrasound, have the patient listen to the fetal heartbeat, and give a detailed description of the fetus. Under the law, a woman cannot decline hearing the description except in cases of rape, incest, or fetal abnormality.

The January ruling by a three-judge panel overturned a lower court decision that said the law was unconstitutional because it forced doctors to be the “mouthpiece” of the state’s ideological agenda. Proponents argue the law ensures women are fully informed before deciding to abort. The Center for Reproductive Rights said it would appeal for a rehearing by the entire Fifth Circuit.

Comments

I can;t believe you still don't get it! Abortion is never going to change in America...most Americans are for it and 40 years of sending anti-abortion people from the Republican party has not done anything to change it.To continue to do the same thing over and over and expect a different outcome is by definition insanity. Time to get smart and leave non political issues behind and focus on the very real political problems this nation faces.

According to a very recent poll, from about a week ago, 79% of Americans are in favor of severely restricting abortions. The number is unchanged from a poll taken 2 years ago. So no, most Americans are not in favor of abortions, and it's an important issue to many people, especially Christians.

Patricia,

You use poll numbers to justify passing laws to make abortions more difficult to obtain. Truth be told, the polls really don't matter. For ardent anti-abortionists, it doesn't matter that others than themselves think.

I used the poll numbers in response to Mark's post saying that "most Americans support abortion", when in fact, they do not. And you can say the same exact thing in response to the liberals "For ardent abortionists, it doesn't matter what others than themselves think" The fact of the matter is, it's never ok to murder an innocent child. Obama even voted for infanticide 3 times while in the Illinois Senate, I can get you the info on that if you don't know. So much for his Christianity that he would actually vote 3 times to kill a live-born infant that survived an abortion. There is no Holy Spirit there in those decisions. Even Ted Kennedy and Barbara Boxer voted against an identical bill when it was in the US Senate. What kind of person would kill a live born surviving infant?

I am still amazed that christians continue to "strain out a gnat and swallow a camel" as Jesus long ago accused the scribes and pharisees in his day. Where does the Bible say we ought to spend our resources trying to stop abortion by others, (I presume that anti-abortionists will not commit abortion themselves) by getting the world to pass laws against it. The mission of the church is not to get laws passed against people committing sin, it is to demonstrate the love of God ("by this shall men know that you are my disciples, that you love one another") and spread the Gospel. The irony of having Tony Perkins' organization take $4 million from convicted Jack Abramoff to stop one group from getting a casino license so that it would not compete with another group that Jack Abramoff helped to get on makes the world laugh at some of the antics of those who say they are followers of Jesus Christ.

Welby, as a member of the Church - the Body of Christ -
I would rather my tithe go to legislation defending the life of an innocent baby then to buying flat screen TV's for a more edgy worship service. Your advice that Christians do nothing in working toward moral legislation (no Christians in politics?) is tragic. To just love and be good and not have abortions but do nothing about the little ones who have no choice and are aborted daily is tragic and unloving and immoral. Jesus said to those who harmed a little one, "it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.Woe unto the world because of these offenses!"
"All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing." -Edmund Burke.
And that is what you suggest we do.

Dear patricia,you state it is not the mission of the church to pass laws against people committing sin,but to show the love of God. our God is a God of justice and His people will have the same characteristics.
William Wilberforce spent most of his adult life working through British parliament to bring about laws that abolish slavery.
Women missionaries worked to bring about changing laws in India to stop the use of child prostitutes in Hindu temples. Jesus said he had come to heal the broken hearted and to set the captives free,He puts His people in many different areas to bring the kingdom of God to this hurting world and one of them is politics and law making.Sadly most christians do not pray for their leaders enough either at local level,state and national.blessings,Maria.(Australia)

Patricia, and Christiana, and Maria, I realize that there is a lot of social work that christians should do. What amazes me is that the fight against abortion and birth-control seems to ignore many of the living, breathing "little ones" which Jesus referred to who so desperately need help. Ironically, though, many of those who seem to be fighting abortion seem to be supporting rebublicans, who are against helping those who need. Note the response to the question at the debate when asked about the person without insurance showing up at an emergency room needing help, whether he should be allowed to die. Those watching the debate were left with the unmistakable impression that it was the consensus that he should be allowed to die. This is the perspective of those that many evangelicals support and it is so blatantly ironical that they prefer to fight for those not yet born than to show love and mercy to those around us. Is this the calling of the christian? Where in the Bible can someone get that impression?