With the greatest number of women ever in Congress, there is still mathematical reason to debate 2012 as a “Year of the Woman.” The elections have come and gone and men still hold 80 out of 100 (80 percent) seats in the Senate, and 355 of 433 (82 percent) filled seats in the House.
Reproductive health and rights were once again the subject of extensive debate in state capitols in 2012. Over the course of the year, 42 states and the District of Columbia enacted 122 provisions related to reproductive health and rights. One-third of these new provisions, 43 in 19 states, sought to restrict access to abortion services.
The GOP platform committee did not amend language from the 2004 and 2008 GOP platforms, which “assert the sanctity of human life,” and provide no exceptions to abortion in any case whatsoever. The committee add language opposing drugs such as mifepristone, but members agreed that this platform amendment did not apply to EC.
A state law requiring women to receive an ultrasound at least a day before having an abortion has already caused a Northern Virginia health clinic to reduce its non-abortion services in the month since it took effect, according to a clinic official.
With their new power in Richmond, anti-choice politicians thought 2012 was their premier opportunity to railroad these policies into law with little resistance. These lawmakers grossly underestimated the outrage their insidious attacks on women’s health would provoke in Virginia and across the nation. With this spring awakening will come retribution at the polls this fall and in fall 2013.
Governor Bob McDonnell is trying to play down the outrage over an intrusive law mandating unnecessary medical procedures by calling it a “kerfluffle,” suggesting he is trying to “empower women,” and spreading other misinformation about the bill. A resident of Virginia responds.
Pictures worth 10,000 words… Virginia sends in riot police to arrest peaceful protestors supporting women’s rights. Apparently, they can occupy your uterus, but you can’t occupy your state capitol.
According to Virginia Delegate David Englin doctors will be turned into criminals and women victims of a sex crime under the “object sexual penetration” law if Governor Bob McDonnell signs the state sanctioned rape bill. Mr. Englin plans to bring his case to the floor next week when the house debates the senate version of the bill.
Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell’s proposed budget would cut the entire $455,000 in state funding to the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Initiative which supports programs at schools and clinics in seven health districts, including Alexandria, which have the highest teenage pregnancy rates in the state.
Not to be outdone by other misogynistic governors seeking to limit women’s rights throughout the country, Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell issues that harshest and most medically-unnecessary regulations yet seen.