West Virginia Governor Vetoes Late-Term Abortion Ban

Tomblin Credit UKfan2013CHARLESTON, W.V. — The governor of West Virginia has vetoed a late-term abortion bill approved by both state Houses, stating that the legislation is likely unconstitutional.

Democratic Governor Earl Ray Tomblin drew angst among pro-life groups after the move on Friday, as he is the first governor to reject a bill that seeks to ban abortion after 20 weeks gestation. Tomblin also professes to be pro-life.

“I believe there is no greater gift of love than the gift of life. I have stated this time and again throughout my career and it is reflected in my legislative voting record,” he said following the veto. “However, I have vetoed [the bill] because I am advised, by not only attorneys from the legislature, but through my own legal team that this bill is unconstitutional.”

“The bill is also problematic because it unduly restricts the physician-patient relationship. All patients, particularly expectant mothers, require the best, most unfettered medical judgment and advice from their physicians regarding treatment options,” Tomblin continued. “The medical community has made it clear to me that the criminal penalties this bill imposes will impede that advice, and those options, to the detriment of the health and safety of expectant mothers.”

“No person may perform or induce, or attempt to perform or induce, an abortion upon a woman when it has been determined … that the probable post fertilization age of the woman’s unborn child is twenty or more weeks unless there is reasonable medical judgment that she has a condition which so complicates her medical condition as to necessitate the abortion of her pregnancy to avert her death or to avert serious risk of substantial and irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function, not including psychological or emotional conditions,” the bill, HB4588, read.

The legislation, also known as the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, also outlines that “[b]y eight weeks after fertilization, the unborn child reacts to stimuli that would be recognized as painful if applied to an adult human.” It notes that “[p]ain receptors are present no later than sixteen weeks after fertilization and nerves link these receptors to the brain’s thalamus and subcortical plate by no later than twenty weeks.”

Pro-life groups have been dismayed by Tomblin’s move, stating that it is far from a pro-life position.

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“Gov. Tomblin’s veto of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act is a total abandonment of the most vulnerable unborn children in West Virginia,” stated Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life.

“The governor has placed himself in a minority position on this bill,” said Wanda Franz, president of West Virginians for Life.

Some organizations, however, do not favor late-term abortion bans as they still permit ending the lives of the unborn for the first several months of pregnancy.

“What about all the children before six months of pregnancy, Mr. Graham?” the organization Columbia Christians for Life asked when South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham proposed similar legislation. “‘The Silent Scream’ [documentary’s] ultrasound video of the suction abortion of an 11-week child has already shown us unborn children feel pain much earlier than your bogus 20-week pain capable bill—and this video was produced in 1984—almost 30 years ago!”

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  • tray

    you idiot. how can you say you are pro-life but allow a human being to be murdered?? you sir are a stain in this once great country! Funny how the one’s saying we have the right to kill an innocent human being are the one’s that are already alive…..but that day comes when you wlll stand before our great creator and have to answer to HIM for your sins…good luck with that!

  • Jay

    OK, I was going to let this one slide but after hearing this Governor mistakenly accused of murder repeatedly………………

    For whatever it’s worth to you Numbers 5: 11-31 is a record where it is recorded that God will give a miscarriage to a woman that has been unfaithful. Some say that the record doesn’t “SAY” that the woman might be pregnant so the words that the NIV translated as “miscarry” does not apply. I answer to them that the record makes it clear that in this situation she might have been having sex, so what color is the sky in your world when you say that she can not be pregnant. I stubbed my toe this morning, but don’t be fooled, I’m not actually “saying” that it was painful.

    I think that many people sincerely believe that abortion is murder, but they mistakenly seek to take the same option away from women or couples that may find themselves in a similar situation. Their version of purity and ethical integrity does not fit well with many people or their unique situations, but I do not deny them the freedom to not choose abortion either.

    In numbers God Himself aborts fetuses in certain situations, but these do-gooders think that they know it all. Abortion is not murder….unless you think that God is morally inferior to you as well based on Numbers 5 the issue as I see it is that God gave all care and responsibility for a fetus to the mom first and foremost, and of course by association to anyone involved in her life. Care for pregnant women will of course reflect on us as a culture in God’s eyes I believe. But the choice is hers.

    There ARE NO GODLY STATUTES banning abortion, and even in this case an abortion (pretty much) is granted by God. The best that I’ve seen in anti-abortion circles is reliance on the commandment, “Thou shall not murder. But from what I have seen in the scriptures…..ABORTION IS NOT MURDER. And we don’t stone and vilify women publicly for adultery anymore since Jesus told the one woman that he did not condemn her either.

    So biblicaly speaking the urge to ban abortions may be ethically and spiritually refuted by any number of answers from “none of your dang business” TO “not only is your law stupid, but it has no resemblance whatsoever to anything God has said….EVER.”

    And as to you people that condemn women with your rude supposedly Christian condemnation, you suck even worse than the accusers that wanted to stone the adulteress because you don’t even have one biblical criminal statute to back you up. Abortion is not murder, and your rudeness is (when it rears it’s ugly head) vile and offensive to me

    • Max

      Jay, nowhere in Numbers 5 or anywhere in the Bible does it say that a woman can purposefully kill her unborn baby. The verses you reference refer to a “Truth” test. If the woman was lying about committing adultery, God, the final judge, would will that she be barren and miscarry as punishment for her falsehood and adultery as a curse upon her.

      You cannot twist the Bible’s truths to fulfill your desire to justify abortion. It sounds like you are angry, perhaps facing a decision or a pain from having to deal with abortion. If this is the case, please pray to God for guidance. I know others who’ve had this pain, and only God can heal them. Reading and studying the full Bible will also put perspective into one’s views and I recommend this to everyone.

      • Jay

        Some Christians just have no respect for artfully applied scripture.


        Romans 2 (1599 Geneva Bible)
        19 And persuadest thyself that thou art a guide of the blind, a light of them which are in darkness,
        20 An instructor of them which lack discretion, a teacher of the unlearned, which hast the [w]form of knowledge, and of the truth in the [x]law.
        21 Thou therefore, which teachest another, teachest thou not thyself? thou that preachest, A man should not steal, dost thou steal?
        22 Thou that sayest, A man should not commit adultery, dost thou commit adultery? thou that abhorrest idols, committest thou sacrilege?
        23 Thou that gloriest in the Law, through breaking the Law, dishonorest thou God?
        24 For the Name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles through you, as it is written.


        So you boast in God’s Word, but ignore the commandment in Numbers 5 by trying to ban abortions….Good job legalistic Christians, unless the scriptures count for anything you should be OK, right?

  • Just another demoncrat who will soon be voted out of office!