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Virginians aren't forgetting Cuccinelli and Obenshain's crusade to ban abortion


July 30, 2013

ProgressVA today released a new video highlighting something Ken Cuccinelli and Mark Obenshain would prefer Virginians forget: their records when it comes to personhood legislation. In separate appearances at the end of July, Cuccinelli and Obenshain backed away from their previous support for legislation that would outlaw abortion and some forms of birth control in Virginia. In a clear case of "believe what I say, not the long record of things I did", Cuccinelli and Obenshain have tried to gloss over their support for personhood in 2007, and 2011, and 2012.

Progressive Point: Politicians have no business interfering in private decisions that should be between a woman, her family, her doctor, and her faith. But Ken Cuccinelli and Mark Obenshain have determined their place is in your doctor's office. Their right wing agenda would limit women's access to reproductive care, from birth control to abortion.

Cuccinelli and Obenshain may want us to forget about their support for an extreme measure to ban abortion and some forms of birth control, but Virginia women aren't that easily confused.  From radical restrictions designed to shut down women's health centers to extreme personhood legislation, they've championed measures designed to ban abortion. Our elected officials should be focusing on expanding affordable health care access, not hoping you forgot about their efforts to deny women their constitutionally-protected rights.

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Watch the video:

personhood video


Get the Facts:

  • Obenshain and Cuccinelli cosponsored 2007 personhood legislation. [HB2797]

  • The Associated Press described HB2979, sponsored by Obenshain and Cuccinelli, as a "bill that could have banned abortions", explaining "by giving embryos the constitutional protection of personhood from the instant of fertilization, abortions of all types would become illegal." [Associated Press, 2/6/2007]

  • Obenshain was the chief patron of 2011 legislation which would give fetuses "enjoy all the rights, privileges, and immunities available to other persons, citizens, and residents of the Commonwealth." [SB1207]

  • Obenshain opposed a motion to kill 2012 personhood legislation by sending it back to the Senate Education and Health Committee [Virginia Legislative Information System, HB1]

  • Cuccinelli vocally supported the 2012 personhood measure, speaking at a rally in support of the bill. ""This personhood bill recognizes a scientific reality. Life begins at conception," said Cuccinelli, a candidate for governor. "Make sure you talk to your senators. Advocate for this issue."" Speaking at the same rally, Cuccinelli told the crowd, "The fight for life is going to last for all of our lives." [Lynchburg News & Advance, 2/15/2012; WTVR, 2/15/2012]

  • The Washington Post's Fact Checker awarded 3 Pinocchio's to Cuccinelli's claim that he never supported legislation which would criminalize some forms of birth control. [Washington Post, 7/23/13]

  • Mark Obenshain's full interview with the Jack Gravely show is available online at

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