January 8, 2013 — Despite drawing nationwide backlash over antiabortion measures last year, Virginia legislators have pre-filed several bills for the upcoming session that would restrict access to abortion and contraception, the Washington Post reports. According to the Post, lawmakers had pledged to focus on jobs, transportation and education in 2013.
Anna Scholl, executive director of Progress Virginia, said, "We're seeing a repeat this year of the huge gap between their rhetoric and their actions." She added, "Instead of leaving behind their divisive anti-women agenda, conservatives in Richmond are expanding those attacks on women's health" (Haines, Washington Post, 1/4).
State Sen. Thomas Garrett (R) proposed a bill (SB 826) that would bar Medicaid from covering abortions in cases "in which a physician certifies ... that the fetus would be born with a gross and totally incapacitating physical deformity or mental deficiency."
State Del. Bob Marshall (R) has introduced four bills -- three that would allow health insurers to deny contraceptive coverage to women and one that would make it a crime for doctors to knowingly perform sex-selective abortions (Bassett, Huffington Post, 1/4).
Debra Ness, publisher & president, National Partnership
Andrea Friedman, associate editor & director of reproductive health programs, National Partnership
Melissa Safford, associate editor & policy advocate for reproductive health, National Partnership
Perry Sacks, assistant editor & health program associate, National Partnership
Cindy Romero, assistant editor & communications assistant, National Partnership
Justyn Ware, editor
Amanda Wolfe, editor-in-chief
Heather Drost, Hanna Jaquith, Marcelle Maginnis, Ashley Marchand and Michelle Stuckey, staff writers
Tucker Ball, director of new media, National Partnership