Abortion bans backed by Gov. Glenn Youngkin would pit the religious views of Virginians against each other, and in the process strike a blow to the Virginia economy, according to a state lawmaker.
“This morning, Gov. Youngkin spoke of building on economic success, which occurred under Democratic leadership, but a Commonwealth that hinders access to healthcare for pregnant Virginians would deter major employers from investing here,” said Del. Eileen Filler-Corn, who hosted a panel discussion kicking off an interfaith coalition of clergy and people of faith in support of reproductive liberty and opposed to proposed abortion bans at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Richmond on Friday.
Filler-Corn, the former House Speaker and the only Jewish woman currently serving in the House of Delegates, and Del. Delores McQuinn, an associate pastor, are heading up the effort, the Virginia Interfaith Reproductive Liberty Coalition, which grew out of a June 30th event on religious liberty hosted by Filler-Corn featuring rabbis, a physician, and other Jewish leaders condemning abortion bans proposed by Youngkin and Republican legislators.
Youngkin said last month in an interview on CBS’s “Face the Nation” that because he believes that “life begins at conception,” his job as “a pro-life governor” is to “find a way to get things done,” hinting that he would support an all-out ban if he could have a Republican majority in both the House and Senate to work with.
“I believe that’s what we’ve been able to do is get things done at a time where you have to bring people together in order to make progress. As I said, I believe life begins at conception. In Virginia, we’ve got to work with a Senate and a House. This is what we’ve been doing,” Youngkin said.
Youngkin’s belief that life begins at conception runs afoul of the religious beliefs of others, as Filler-Corn noted.
“Gov. Youngkin’s proposed abortion bans are not just a danger to our health, they infringe upon the religious beliefs of Jewish Virginians, and millions of other people of faith,” Filler-Corn said. “This sets a dangerous precedent that imposes the religious views of one group upon others. I look forward to organizing more events with clergy and people of faith throughout the Commonwealth in the coming weeks.”
“Now, more than ever, we must come together as people of faith and every walk of life to speak in support of reproductive health rights for Virginians,” said McQuinn, whose House seat represents parts of Chesterfield County, Henrico County and the City of Richmond. “Women are capable of making decisions for our own reproductive healthcare and that are in best interest of our families. We refuse to sit silently as attempts are being made to relegate women to second class citizens, once again. My concerns go far beyond the issue of reproductive rights, but the reality is that this is an attempt to control mind, body and spirit.”