Today, the House of Delegates passed by a vote of 72-25 HB 393, patroned by Delegate Matt Lohr (R-26, Harrisonburg), a bill that would put unregulated abortion centers (see LiveActionBlog) under three simple regulations: licensure, an annual inspection and to have life saving equipment on premises, such as defibrillators. In fact, the General Assembly Building has three such devices. In the floor debate on the bill’s second read yesterday, when bills in the House are debated, opposition came from one of the General Assembly’s biggest pro-abortion advocates, Delegate David Englin (D-45, Alexandria). He tried to make the case that unregulated abortion centers are regulated. But Delegate Lohr correctly replied that, if so, then the simple requirements in the bill would not be cause for concern to the abortion centers. Delegate Englin then tried to paint a picture of hypocrisy by stating that doctors’ offices of various specialties are not regulated by the state. However, as Delegate Lohr responded, specific boards govern each medical specialty. But there are no boards that institute standards for abortionists.
The bipartisan vote — 11 of the 36 voting Democrats voted yes — was one of the largest margins in recent history. The bill now goes to the Senate where it most likely will be referred to the Education and Health Committee. Although pro-life bills typically meet a horrendous fate there, we will continue to fight for — and ask your help in those battles — on just bills, such HB 393, and continue to spotlight the lawmakers who prove to be grossly out of step with mainstream Virginia.