The Virginia General Assembly has tabled a bill that would have allowed abortion in the state even as a woman is about to give birth.
The General Assembly tabled the legislation Wednesday after news of the exchange between its sponsor, Democrat Delegate Kathy Tran, and an opponent, GOP Delegate Todd Gilbert, went viral, WTVR reported.
“I was caught off guard and probably wasn’t as artful in the moment as I could have been,” Tran said, describing her participation in the exchange, according to the report.“The bill is intended to remove unnecessary medical and unduly burdensome barriers that women have to accessing healthcare.”
Democrat Delegate Eileen Filler-Corn said the exchange was “deliberately misleading” and “part of an orchestrated ambush.”
Gilbert, however, described it as “a moment of unbridled honesty about their agenda and their legislation and what it actually does.”
Democrat Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s comments during an appearance on WTOP-FM Wednesday heightened the firestorm over the bill when he said an “infant” delivered when a woman chose abortion at that point would be “resuscitated if that’s what the mother” wanted:
If a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen. The infant would be delivered. The infant would be kept comfortable. The infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother.
According to the Washington Post, Northam’s spokesperson, Ofirah Yheskel, later attempted to clarify his comments: