Gaining perspective on Abortion in West Virginia
(Charleston – January 17, 2014) West Virginians for Life (WVFL) has worked to prevent the expansion of abortion funding through the health care polices offered in the New Health Care Exchange. We have explained that 24 states have already passed Abortion Opt-Out provisions as allowed under the new ACA law, and that West Virginia is overdue in passing its own Abortion Opt-Out provision. We have pointed out that West Virginia is numbered among only fourteen states which have no restrictions on public funding of abortion in any form within their state during all nine months of pregnancy. It was also pointed out that states considered historically liberal, including Maine, Delaware, the District of Columbia, New Hampshire and Rhode Island, all restrict the funding of abortion in some way.
West Virginia has not passed a pro-life law since 2010. Now a new study reveals just how far behind West Virginia has fallen in comparison with other states. According to the Guttmacher Institute’s year-end report, pro-life laws on abortion have been increasing nationally in recent years at historic rates. From 2011 to 2013, no less than 205 abortion restrictions were enacted in the U.S. That’s more than the total number enacted for the entire decade between 2000 and 2010. It would appear that the nation has been increasing its support for pro-life positions, while, at the same time, West Virginia legislators have not taken a single vote on pro-life issues.
These regulations break down into four basic categories.
- Increased regulations of abortion clinics such as requiring doctors who perform abortions to have hospital admitting privileges.
- Limits on insurance coverage of abortion, particularly within the new health exchanges that have been set up to sell coverage under the Affordable Care Act.
- Bans on abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
- Limits on abortions that rely on pills rather than surgery (referred to as “medical” abortions).
The time for waiting is over.
The lack of support for pro-life legislation over the years, especially in light of the progress made by the rest of the nation, justifies a new approach this legislative session. Yes, WVFL will use the committee process as its primary means of passing legislation. At the same time, it should be understood that we will now score those votes that either directly or indirectly hinder or prevent the passage of the Abortion Opt-Out Bill. This includes the moving of the Opt-Out to the inactive calendar, as well as a vote which lays over a motion to discharge, and, of course, a vote which prevents the discharging of a committee.
These are the appropriate actions to take:
- in light of the fact that the Abortion Opt-Out was not allowed to pass last year before the exchanges became active;
- in light of the fact that there has been little progress in advancing legislation in recent years;
- in light of the fact that legislators across this nation have been willing to act in support of pro-life legislation;
- in light of the fact that the House leadership has chosen to make it much more difficult to discharge legislation.
Please remain vigilant!
Your help will be needed in the days ahead, now that the Regular Session has begun. Please help others to be informed about where their legislators stand on the Abortion Opt-Out issue. We have included a list of supporters below.
Working at the State Capitol, I will keep you informed through email and social media so you will be able to respond when calls are especially needed. I am looking forward to the development of the pro-life conversation in the days ahead as legislators respond to their pro-life constituents.
• Plan to attend the Pro-Life Rally on February 11th under the dome at the State Capitol.
• Sign the Opt-Out Petition either electronically online or print out the petition. Deadline to receive petitions is February 10.
• Contact your representatives and tell them to vote to opt-out of funding of abortion.
Below is a list of those West Virginia State Legislators who have signed the WVFL questionnaire indicating they support the Abortion Opt-Out legislation. If your representative(s) are on this list, please call and thank them for their support. If they are not on this list, call and let them know that you want them to support the Opt-Out Legislation. This list is also available as a pdf document.
Senate Members Contact Info
House Members Contact Info
|Ambler, Delegate George||Rep||HD 42||Greenbrier, Monroe, Summers|
|Anderson, Delegate Bill||Rep||HD 8||Wood|
|Andes, Delegate Troy||Rep||HD 15||Putnam|
|Armstead, Delegate Tim||Rep||HD 40||Kanawha|
|Arvon, Delegate Karen “Lynne”||Rep||HD 31||Raleigh, Wyoming|
|Ashley, Delegate Bob||Rep||HD 11||Jackson, Roane|
|Azinger, Delegate Tom||Rep||HD 10||Wood|
|Barker, Delegate Josh||Dem||HD 22||Boone, Lincoln, Logan, Putnam|
|Boley, Senator Donna||Rep||SD 3||Pleasants, Roane, Wirt, Wood|
|Border, Delegate Anna||Rep||HD 9||Wirt, Wood|
|Butler, Delegate Jim||Rep||HD 14||Mason, Putnam|
|Cadle, Delegate Scott||Rep||HD 13||Jackson, Mason, Putnam|
|Campbell, Delegate Denise||Dem||HD 43||Pocahontas, Randolph|
|Cann, Senator Sam||Dem||SD 12||Braxton, Clay, Gilmer, Harrison, Lewis|
|Canterbury, Delegate Ray||Rep||HD 42||Greenbrier, Monroe, Summers|
|Cooper, Delegate Roy||Rep||HD 28||Monroe, Raleigh, Summers|
|Cowles, Delegate Daryl||Rep||HD 58||Hampshire, Morgan|
|Eldridge, Delegate Jeff||Dem||HD 22||Boone, Lincoln, Logan, Putnam|
|Ellem, Delegate John||Rep||HD 10||Wood|
|Ellington, Delegate Joe||Rep||HD 27||Mercer, Raleigh|
|Espinosa, Delegate Paul||Rep||HD 66||Jefferson|
|Evans, Delegate Allen||Rep||HD 54||Grant, Mineral, Pendleton|
|Evans, Delegate David||Rep||HD 4||Marshall, Ohio|
|Faircloth, Delegate Larry||Rep||HD 60||Berkeley|
|Ferns, Delegate Ryan||Rep||HD 3||Ohio|
|Fitzsimmons, Senator Rocky||Dem||SD 1||Brooke, Hancock, Marshall, Ohio|
|Folk, Delegate Michael||Rep||HD 63||Berkeley|
|Frich, Delegate Cindy||Rep||HD 51||Monongalia|
|Gearheart, Delegate Marty||Rep||HD 27||Mercer, Raleigh|
|Green, Senator Mike||Dem||SD 9||McDowell, Raleigh, Wyoming|
|Hall, Senator Daniel||Dem||SD 9||McDowell, Raleigh, Wyoming|
|Hall, Senator Mike||Rep||SD 4||Jackson, Mason, Putnam, Roane|
|Hamilton, Delegate Bill||Rep||HD 45||Upshur|
|Hamrick, Delegate Danny||Rep||HD 48||Harrison, Taylor|
|Hartman, Delegate William||Dem||HD 43||Pocahontas, Randolph|
|Householder, Delegate Eric||Rep||HD 64||Berkeley|
|Howell, Delegate Gary||Rep||HD 56||Mineral|
|Ireland, Delegate Woody||Rep||HD 7||Pleasants, Ritchie|
|Kump, Delegate Larry||Rep||HD 59||Berkeley, Morgan|
|Lane, Delegate Patrick||Rep||HD 38||Kanawha, Putnam|
|Lynch, Delegate David||Dem||HD44||Nicholas, Randolph, Upshur, Webster|
|McCuskey, Delegate John||Rep||HD 35||Kanawha|
|Miller, Delegate Carol||Rep||HD 16||Cabell, Lincoln|
|Moye, Delegate Ricky||Dem||HD 29||Raleigh|
|Nelson, Delegate Eric||Rep||HD 35||Kanawha|
|Nelson, Delegate Joshua||Rep||HD 23||Boone|
|Nohe, Senator David||Rep||SD 3||Pleasants, Roane, Wirt, Wood|
|O’Neal, Delegate John||Rep||HD 28||Monroe, Raleigh, Summers|
|Overington, Delegate John||Rep||HD 62||Berkeley|
|Pasdon, Delegate Amanda||Rep||HD 51||Monongalia|
|Perry, Delegate David||Dem||HD 32||Clay, Fayette, Nicholas, Raleigh|
|Raines, Delegate Suzette||Rep||HD 35||Kanawha|
|Reynolds, Delegate Doug||Dem||HD 17||Cabell, Wayne|
|Romine, Delegate Wm. Roger||Rep||HD 6||Doddridge, Pleasants, Tyler|
|Rowan, Delegate Ruth||Rep||HD 57||Hampshire, Mineral|
|Shott, Delegate John||Rep||HD 27||Mercer, Raleigh|
|Skaff, Delegate Doug||Dem||HD 35||Kanawha|
|Smith, Delegate Peggy Donaldson||Dem||HD 46||Lewis, Upshur|
|Smith, Delegate Randy||Rep||HD 53||Preston, Tucker|
|Sobonya, Delegate Kelli||Rep||HD 18||Cabell|
|Stephens, Delegate Dale||Dem||HD 17||Cabell, Wayne|
|Storch, Delegate Erikka||Rep||HD 3||Ohio|
|Sumner, Delegate Linda||Rep||HD 30||Raleigh|
|Sypolt, Senator Dave||Rep||SD 14||Barb, Gra, Hard, Min, Mon, Pres, Tayl, Tuck|
|Tomblin, Delegate Ted||Dem||HD 24||Boone, Logan, Wyoming|
|Unger, Senator John||Dem||SD 16||Berkeley, Jefferson|
|Walker, Delegate David||Dem||HD 33||Calhoun, Clay, Gilmer|
|Walters, Senator Chris||Rep||SD 8||Kanawha, Putnam|
|Walters, Delegate Ron||Rep||HD 39||Kanawha|
|Westfall, Delegate Steve||Rep||HD 12||Jackson|
|Williams, Delegate Larry||Dem||HD 52||Preston|
|Young, Delegate Adam||Dem||HD 41||Greenbrier, Nicholas|