Pro-Choice Candidate of the Day: Senator John Edwards, Senate District 21

We’re just two weeks away from one of the biggest elections for reproductive choice in Virginia in years. On Tuesday, November 8, Virginians across the state will go to the polls to vote on all 140 General Assembly seats. All this week on the blog, we are spotlighting pro-choice candidates of the day in key races across the state, so you know who will stand up for women’s health in Richmond and who we’re working to help elect this fall!

Welcome back to our pro-choice candidate of the day spotlight! Earlier today, we told you about the importance of re-electing pro-choice champion Senator Edd Houck.

Sen. John Edwards

For our second spotlighted pro-choice candidate of the day, we travel to the southwest corner of Virginia to Senate District 21. SD-21 covers the cities of Roanoke and Blacksburg and parts of Montgomery, Roanoke and Giles counties.

In this race, Senator John Edwards is the pro-choice candidate.

Senator Edwards, a Roanoke native and long-time public servant, has been a constant 100-percent pro-choice champion during his 15 years in the state Senate. Earlier this year, he stood up against politically-motivated regulations that place women’s access to abortion in jeopardy.

Senator Edwards, like Senator Houck, is a member of the vital Senate Committee on Education and Health, which frequently checks Governor McDonnell’s relentless anti-choice agenda.

Senator Edwards’ opponent is anti-choice state Delegate Dave Nutter. Delegate Nutter consistently scores zero-percent on our annual legislative scorecard.  In this year’s General Assembly session alone, Delegate Nutter voted in favor of four anti-choice bills or amendments.

While Senator Edwards was standing up for women’s rights and health during the 2011 legislative session, Delegate Nutter voted to:

  • Single out women’s health centers for politically-motivated new regulations that place women’s access to safe, legal abortion in jeopardy. (SB 924)
  • Grant constitutional rights to zygotes, effectively banning legal abortion and many FDA-approved birth control methods. (House Bill 1440)
  • Prevent a woman from using her own money in the free market to purchase private insurance that would cover abortion care. (House Bill 2147, House Bill 2434)
  • Restore money to failed abstinence-only-until-marriage sex education programs for Virginia youth. (House Bill 1500, amended)

Because Virginia’s state Senate is “mixed-choice,” we cannot afford to lose even one pro-choice vote this November — especially not to a staunchly anti-choice politician like Delegate Nutter. As a long-time champion of women’s health, Senator Edwards will continue to make sure the government does not intrude into the private medical decisions of Virginia women.

We know that Senator John Edwards will continue to be a strong pro-choice leader in Richmond. Learn how you can get involved to get out the pro-choice vote by visiting our Elections page.  Make sure to get out and vote on Tuesday, November 8 and remind all your pro-choice friends to do the same!

By NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia PAC staff. Not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.


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