Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe said this week that he will veto a late-term abortion bill if it reaches his desk, claiming the measure would hurt businesses in the state.
The Associated Press reports Virginia lawmakers are considering a new bill to ban abortions after 20 weeks when strong scientific evidence indicates unborn babies can feel pain. Virginia Delegate Dave LaRock, R-Loudoun County, proposed the bill, known as the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.
“It’s outrageous for a person with any compassion to turn a blind eye while this torture takes place,” LaRock said, the Christian News Network reports.
In an interview with the Burke Patch, Victoria Cobb of The Family Foundation added, “There’s just no question that Virginians want public policy that understands the humanity of the unborn, and I think [they’ve] been heading in that direction for a long time.”
Here’s more from the AP:
McAuliffe, a Democrat, told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he wants to send a clear message to the Republican-controlled General Assembly not to “waste time” trying to be part of that effort.
The General Assembly’s 2017 legislative session starts next week and McAuliffe does not typically comment on proposed legislation until after it passes both chambers. But the governor said he needed to make clear to companies looking to invest in Virginia that the legislation had no hope of passage.
“I can’t sit back and have that sitting out the same time I am traveling the globe recruiting businesses to Virginia,” McAuliffe said, adding that he is going on an important recruiting trip this weekend. “If there’s something that would be damaging toward business, and to our image around the country and the globe, I’ll veto it, you bet I will.”
McAuliffe has been a faithful ally of the abortion industry in Virginia. While campaigning for governor in 2013, McAuliffe promised to be a “brick wall” against any limits on abortion in Virginia.
Last March, McAuliffe vetoed a bill to defund the abortion giant Planned Parenthood of taxpayer dollars. In the past year, he also made it a priority to water down the state’s health and safety regulations for abortion facilities, according to the Family Foundation of Virginia.
Fifteen states already have laws in place to ban abortions after 20 weeks on pain-capable unborn babies. Two of the states, Georgia and Idaho, face legal challenges to their laws, but 13 states have their laws in effect, according to the National Right to Life Committee.
Together, these laws potentially are saving thousands of babies’ lives. Abortion activists often claim that late-term abortions are rare and only make up about 1.3 percent of abortions in the U.S.; but even that small percentage represents thousands of unborn babies’ lives.
There were at least 5,770 late-term abortions at or after 21 weeks of pregnancy in 2013 in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control. Another approximate 8,150 abortions took place between 18 weeks and 20 weeks, the CDC reports.
ACTION: Contact the governor here.