A Virginia GOP delegate’s proposal to eliminate public funding for abortions, without exceptions for rape, incest, or life-saving situations, is set to go to a full vote in the Democratic-controlled House of Delegates.
In an unusual procedural move, Democratic leaders plan to bring the bill to a vote, seemingly to force all 49 Republicans in the chamber to take a public stance on an issue that has no realistic chance of becoming law.
House Speaker Don Scott stated that the decision to put the bill to a vote is aimed at ensuring Virginians know where their representatives stand on reproductive healthcare access.
The legislation, sponsored by Delegate Tim Griffin, seeks to cut public funding not only to organizations like Planned Parenthood but also to any facility providing abortion services.
The bill eliminates public funding for abortions in cases of rape and incest, and it lacks an exception for situations where the mother’s life is in jeopardy.
Under current law, public funds can be used for abortions in cases of rape, incest, fetal abnormalities, and life-threatening situations for low-income women on Medicaid.
The move by Democrats to bring the bill to a vote signals an effort to highlight the controversial nature of the proposed legislation and to make Republicans take a clear position on the issue.