NRL News

Hysterical Editorials Bash New Virginia Abortion Clinic Regulations

by | Sep 20, 2011

By Dave Andrusko

Pro-Life Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell

Newspapers often attempt to portray themselves as the “voice of the people.” But the distance between the people of Virginia’s overwhelming support for commonsensical abortion clinic regulations and the hysterical tone of editorials that bashed them as “pushed by conservative ideologues in Richmond and adopted by the state Board of Health” [Washington Post] aka “the state government’s back door attack on abortion clinics” [Hampton Roads Daily Press] could hardly be any broader.

On Friday, on a 12-1 vote, the Virginia Board of Health fleshed out the new law passed last February that requires abortion clinics that perform at least five first-trimester abortions to be regulated like hospitals. The measure passed easily in the House and narrowly in the Senate when a tie-vote was broken by the Lieutenant Governor. Pro-lifers have attempted to pass such measures for the past 16 years.

The day before the Board of Health issued its regulation, The Quinnipiac University poll found that an overwhelming 55% to 22% response in favor of “tougher abortion rules” (as the poll’s headline phrased it) transcended all categories—male/female, black/white, Republican/Democratic/Independent. “There is strong support for the new abortion law among men and women,” Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute explained.  “Even Democrats, by a plurality [47% to 34%], support the measure.” The poll was of 1,368 registered voters

Supporters of this proposed change say it is needed to safeguard the health of women who get abortions; Opponents say the changes are mainly expensive structural changes and are just an effort to force many clinics who cannot afford them out of business. 

Asked which they agreed with by a whopping 50% to 33%, the public agreed the change safeguards the health of women getting abortions.

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