Virginia Senate Democrats Kill Bill to Ban Abortions Up to Birth

State   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Feb 10, 2022   |   1:28PM   |   Richmond, Virginia

Virginia Senate Democrats rejected a bill Thursday that would have protected pain-capable unborn babies from late-term abortions.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports the state Senate Education and Health Committee voted to reject the pro-life legislation in a 9-6 party-line vote.

Sponsored by state Sen. Amanda Chase, R-Chesterfield, the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (Senate Bill 710) would prohibit abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy when strong scientific evidence indicates that unborn babies can feel pain.

Immediately after the vote, the pro-abortion American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia celebrated its defeat on Twitter.

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“Great news,” the group responded. “Our lawmakers are leaving these decisions where they should be – with people, their families, & their doctors. Thank you to those who fought back against this restrictive bill!”

Were it not for the committee, the bill may have had a chance of passing the full state Senate and becoming law. Though Democrats narrowly control the state Senate by just two seats, one Democrat, state Sen. Joseph Morrissey, D-Richmond, said he would support the bill, WUSA 9 reports.

With Morrissey and pro-life Lt. Gov. Winsome Sears casting a tie-breaking vote, the legislation could have passed. Republicans control the state House of Delegates, and Gov. Glenn Youngkin is pro-life.

Earlier this week, Republican leaders said they do not plan to advance the bill in the House because it will not pass the Senate, according to the Times-Dispatch.

By 20 weeks, strong scientific evidence indicates that unborn babies are capable of feeling pain. At this stage, unborn babies are nearly fully formed and rapidly approaching viability.

Polls consistently show strong public support for banning abortion after the first trimester.

The U.S. is one of just a handful of countries that allows abortion on demand through all nine months of pregnancy, and abortion activists are desperately trying to keep it that way. Despite what abortion activists claim, the laws that prohibit later-term abortions and those that require abortion facilities to meet basic health and safety standards are backed by strong scientific evidence and concerns about the well-being of women and children.

Action: Contact Virginia state legislators.