RICHMOND, Va. — This week, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle from Hampton Roads weighed in on the controversial conversation surrounding abortion access and its future in Virginia.
Wednesday, state legislators reconvened in Richmond for a special session of the Virginia General Assembly. After the bipartisan pleasantries, delegates from the region soon took the microphone, some to speak out against Gov. Glenn Youngkin, more specifically his pro-life stance.
"Decisions like this belong to a woman and her doctor, not the governor," Minority Leader and Portsmouth Del. Don Scott said.
Scott argued that the governor's views on the issue are out of touch with the rest of Virginia.
"The reality is that more than half of the state after the Dobbs decision was afraid that the governor and Republicans would try to come in today and ban abortions -- try to limit a woman’s reproductive freedoms," Del. Scott said.
"Protecting life is not what we saw this past legislative session. We saw an extremist agenda more interested in retweets and revenge than protecting constituents' lives. We’ve heard promises to send down a bill to ban abortion and restrict Virginians' freedoms by taking power away from individuals to make decisions about their own health," Newport News Del. Marcia Price said shortly after.
Isle of Wight Republican Del. Emily Brewer argued back, saying that Republican lawmakers don't want to entirely ban abortion access in Virginia, but rather restrict it at the 15-week mark.
“I would encourage our friends on the other side of the aisle, this opens an opportunity for conversation to tell us where you stand, tell us how you feel. The governor made his position very clear on this issue. We’d like to pass a bill: three weeks longer than the European standard, when babies can feel pain," Del. Brewer said.
A spokesperson for Gov. Youngkin's office sent the following statement to 13News Now, regarding Wednesday's comments in the House of Delegates chamber:
"Virginians elected a proud pro-life governor and has tasked Senator Siobhan Dunnavant, Senator Steve Newman, Delegate Kathy Byron and Delegate Margaret Ransone to chart the most successful path forward on abortion legislation in the January session. Virginians want fewer abortions not more and the governor is focused on forging a commonsense path forward, not a one-sided extreme liberal approach."