Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe pushed back Thursday against two pro-life measures in his state, claiming they will hurt business in the state.
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. The abortion industry also donated millions to help get him elected.
During a news conference Thursday, McAuliffe criticized a new bill that would ban abortions after 20 weeks when strong scientific evidence indicates unborn babies can feel pain, WRIC News 8 reports.
He also slammed House delegates for passing a resolution Wednesday to make Jan. 22 a “Day of Tears” in remembrance of all the babies killed in abortions after Roe v. Wade, according to the report.
“They’re not in these economic development meetings with me,” McAuliffe said. “They are not there when I get questions about these women’s issues, about these HB 2 issues. They’re not in the room. I’m there and I can tell you it’s concerning to future employers who may move to Virginia. When you pass these resolutions and this legislation it sends a signal that we are not open and welcoming.”
He continued: “I have made it very clear I will veto [the late-term abortion ban]. That bill has zero chance of becoming law here in the Commonwealth of Virginia.”
Earlier this month, McAuliffe made a similar statement when he vowed to veto the bill, telling lawmakers not to “waste time” trying to pass it.
McAuliffe’s concern about businesses appears to be only with one specific business group – abortion clinics. Last March, he 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.
On Thursday, Republican lawmakers responded by pointing out how the governor received huge campaign donations from the abortion industry.
“I remember a day when the Democratic party used to say it should be legal, safe and rare … and they’ve abandoned that narrative. Now it’s something that it’s almost worthy of celebration,” said Del. Nick Reitas, R-Culpeper, according to News 8.
Public polls show strong support for late-term abortion bans, such as the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. A November 2016 poll found 64 percent of voters support the legislation, including 67 percent of women and 78 percent of young voters.
Earlier this month, Kentucky became the 16th state to enact a Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act to ban abortions after 20 weeks, following Ohio in December. Two of the states, Georgia and Idaho, face legal challenges to their laws, but the rest have their laws in effect, according to the National Right to Life Committee.
Together, these laws potentially are saving thousands of 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.