The Virginia Board of Health voted Friday to impose new building regulations on existing abortion clinics. These regulations could force many abortion clinics to shut down in the state.
The Huffington Post reports that none of the 20 clinics in the state that are applying for a new license currently meet the requirements. One Newport News clinic that has provided abortion services since 1975 told the Daily Press that it would cost about $500,000 to meet the new architectural standards.
Pro-life advocates have hailed the ruling as a victory, while opponents have condemned the decision as the result of a power play by Republican Attorney General Kenneth Cuccinelli, according to the Washington Times.
During this election year, Virginia Democrats are warning their constituents that the consequences of the board of health's decision could stretch beyond the state
Via Washington Times:
“It’s about right-wing Republicans treating our government like a laboratory for radical and offensive policies, while Virginians look for work, sit in traffic and send their kids to overcrowded schools,” State Sen. Barbara Favola (D-Arlington) wrote in a fundraising email to constituents. “That’s what they’re doing in Richmond, and that’s what Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan and George Allen will do in Washington unless we stop them on November 6th.”
In the Senate race between Democrat Tim Kaine and Republican George Allen, Tim Kaine has spoken out against the abortion clinic ruling while Allen has stayed quiet—a sign that Republicans may sense political backlash stemming from the ruling.
“These unnecessary regulations are a very clear attempt to infringe upon women’s constitutionally protected right to make their own health care decisions,” the former governor said. “The continued focus on limiting women’s access to health care is unacceptable,” Kaine said. “Our country is already too divided and our economic recovery is still not as strong as it needs to be. Our leaders should focus on growing the economy, fixing the budget and finding common ground instead of making decisions that women should be able to make for themselves. These divisive issues are wrong for Virginia, they’re wrong for women, and they’re bad for business.”
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* D.C. Council member Michael A. Brown’s driver’s license has been suspended five times over the past eight years
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