On Tuesday, the Virginia House of Representatives passed two of the most restrictive abortion bills in the country. By a vote of 66-32, the Republican majority passed House Bill 1, which defines personhood as beginning at conception and effectively bans any woman from having an abortion, even if she is raped. The bill also would restrict contraceptives and an amendment to the bill would allow civil lawsuits against any doctor that performs an abortion. The bill is by far the most restrictive bill passed by any Republican controlled legislature in many years. Republican Rep. Bob Marshall wrote the legislation.
A second bill was also passed that forces women to undergo a transvaginal ultrasound, which is a serious violation of the body, before being able to get an abortion. Of course if House Bill 1 passes the Senate as it is expected to, women won’t be able to get an abortion at all.
According to ABC 7, “Gov. Bob McDonnell, a socially conservative Roman Catholic, has said he will sign the ultrasound bill, but has taken no position on Marshall’s personhood bill, said his spokesman J. Tucker Martin.”
While Democrats passionately opposed both bills, their effort to defend women’s rights seems to be futile. The Virginia Senate is poised to pass both bills and since Governor McDonnell is a very conservative Catholic, one has to wonder whether his decision will not come from his own mind or the will of the Bishop’s im the Catholic Church. House Bill 1 not only bans abortion, it would fly in the face of President Obama’s contraception coverage rule, which requires insurance companies to offer contraceptives free of charge. The second bill is also outrageous because it forces women to surrender their bodily rights if they want an abortion, by forcing them to undergo a procedure that violates their bodies and destroys their privacy and personal liberty.
Republicans meanwhile, couldn’t care less about the needs of women or the pleas of the Democrats who defend them. “We hear the same song over there. The very tragic human notes that are often touched upon involve extreme examples,” declared Tom Gilbert, R-Shenandoah. “But in the vast majority of these cases, these are matters of lifestyle convenience.”
These bills are an abomination to the Constitution. They effectively revoke a woman’s right to privacy and strip them of their personal liberty. It makes them slaves to men and forces them to be pregnant against their will. As stated above, House Bill 1 would disallow access to birth control and may even ban it altogether. These bills are the most restrictive in the nation. Even the people of Mississippi refused to ban abortion when they rejected a personhood amendment. But this bill isn’t being voted on by people of Virginia. The state legislature has decided to impose its will on the women of the state whether they like it or not.