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The Franklin News-Post
P. O. Box 250
310 Main Street, SW
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151
Fax: 540-483-8013

Abortion bills fail in General Assembly
Several would have removed the ultrasound requirement

Monday, February 4, 2013

By K.A. WAGONER - Staff Writer

Bills to remove the requirement in the Virginia Code that a woman undergo an ultrasound prior to an abortion have been killed in a House subcommittee and a Senate committee.

Last year, the Virginia General Assembly passed legislation to require a transabdominal ultrasound before an abortion in order to determine the gestational age of the fetus. The new law does make exceptions for victims of rape or incest.

Another bill introduced during this session would have stopped the Board of Health from funding abortions for women, who meet certain financial criteria, in cases in which the fetus would be born with a physical deformity or mental deficiency.

That bill (SB826) was killed in the Senate Education and Health Committee last week.

Another bill that would have criminalized the performance of abortions soley based on the sex of the unborn child was killed in the House Constitutional Law subcommittee.

Del. Bob Marshall (R-Manassas), who introduced the bill, said, "Sex selection abortions are becoming more common in the U.S. Studies show a rising son-bias among certain groups. Among those groups, boy/girl birth ratios are normal for first born children, but if a son is not the first born, the ratio of boys to girls is higher for second births and higher still for third births if neither the first or second child is a boy." 

Another of Marshall's bills, HB1417, also deals with insurance companies being forced to provide coverage for contraception, sterilization procedures or abortifacient drugs (substances that induce abortion) or devices under Obamacare's HHS mandate.

"This mandate will require Virginians to pay for a health insurance plan that covers birth control, abortion pills (even for 10-year-olds without parental notice or consent) and sterilization operations," Marshall said.

The bill was referred to the House Committee on Commerce and Labor in December, but it has yet to appear on the committee's docket this session.

Contact your representatives in the Virginia General Assembly to share your views:

•Sen. Bill Stanley, email or call (804) 698-7520.

•Del. Charles Poindexter, email or call (804) 698-1009.

•Sen. Ralph Smith, email or call (804) 698-7519.

•Del. Kathy Byron, email or call (804) 698-1022.

To follow bills throughout the session, visit and click on 2013 Session Tracking, Bills and Resolutions. Then type in the bill number.

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