Del. Bob Marshall: Gov. Bob McDonnell’s abortion amendment is flawed

Note: Ironically, the language in this amendment is precisely what decriminalized abortion in the first place. Please see my entire article @ WND.

From: Delegate Bob Marshall
Sent: Tuesday, April 02, 2013 11:25 PM
Subject: Governor’s Abortion Amendment Flawed

Dear Friends,

Gov. Bob McDonnell has offered a highly flawed amendment to HB 1900 and SB 921 governing insurance coverage in Virginia which I cannot support.  Instead, I will vote “present” on the Governor’s abortion Amendment at the April 3 reconvened session in Richmond.

I have read alerts from several pro-life groups supporting the Governor’s amendment but none included the actual amendment language, which I cite here:

No qualified health insurance plan that is sold or offered for sale through an exchange established or operating in the Commonwealth shall provide coverage for abortions … provided that such limitation shall not apply to an abortion performed (i) when the life of the mother is endangered by a physical disorder, physical illness, or physical injury, including a life-endangering physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy itself, or (ii) when the pregnancy is the result of an alleged act of rape or incest..

Why This Language Is a Problem

This language appears to have been drafted by a political consultant, not a medical doctor who respects the sanctity of each human life.   This flawed and ambiguous amendment was unnecessary. In 2011, Gov. McDonnell offered this same amendment to HB 2434, a bill that set up a Virginia Health Care Exchange.  Earlier I successfully amended a bill (sponsored by Sen. Saslaw; D-Fairfax) which banned abortion insurance coverage in all abortion cases.  My amendment passed the House 56-38.  Sen. Saslaw pulled his bill rather than face a full Senate vote to accept my amendment to his bill.  (See link below.)

Abortionists, backed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, claim though selective reporting (or no reporting) of complications that any legal abortion is safer for a woman than continuing pregnancy.  Since abortion is portrayed to be safer than childbirth, life-endangerment” is not needed to be immediate or imminent and can be allowed even for theoretical possible future “endangerment” under the Governor’s amendment.

The late Dr. Bernard Nathanson, former abortion pioneer and practitioner who presided over 60,000 abortions, personally told me that no abortion is ever necessary to save the life of a pregnant woman in the U.S.  Yet, the Governor’s amendment allows abortion funding if the woman merely states that her pregnancy resulted from rape or incest. Law enforcement is not necessary to verify or prosecute claims.

Lies and Legal Abortion

Dr. Bernard Nathanson, co-founded in 1969 the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws — NARAL — later renamed the National Abortion Rights Action League.  He later changed his stance on abortion.  He was formerly director of New York City’s Center for Reproductive & Sexual Health, then the largest abortion clinic in the U.S.  In the late 1970’s he became a prominent pro-life advocate.

Dr. Nathanson recounted in several books the intentional deceptions (lies) he and his allies used to further legal abortion in America.   In the late 1960’s Dr. Nathanson and colleagues worked to liberalize psychiatric abortions.  Psychiatrists used the “life of the mother exception” for abortion claiming that a woman denied an abortion would commit suicide.  That “softened up” the cause for legal abortion.

Nathanson and his radical abortion proponents faked opinion polls with roughly 60% of Americans approving legal abortion. He called this tactic a “self-fulfilling lie. Few people care to be in the minority.”

Nathanson claimed there were around 1,000,000 illegal abortions in the U.S. annually and that 10,000 women died every year from them.  He later acknowledged that more likely there were 100,000 illegal abortions with 200-250 deaths of women.  (Bernard Nathanson: “Confessions of an Ex-Abortionist” In The Hand of God: A Journey from Death to Life by the Abortion Doctor Who Changed His Mind, © 1997 Regenery Publishing.)

“I confess that I knew the figures were totally false, and I suppose the others did too if they stopped to think of it. But in the ‘morality’ of our revolution, it was a useful figure, widely accepted, so why go out of our way to correct it with honest statistics? The overriding concern was to get the laws eliminated, and anything within reason that had to be done was permissible.” (Bernard Nathanson, M.D. Aborting America, Doubleday, © 1979)

The next big lie was that no one could know when human life begins.  Even the Supreme Court repeated that line although the American Medical Association stated as far back as 1857 and also cited in Roe that “the independent and actual existence of the child before birth, as a living being” is a matter of objective science. They deplored the ‘popular ignorance…that the foetus is not alive till after the period of quickening.’”

But even more lies were needed for the abortion legalization victory.  Norma McCorvey, the plaintiff in the 1973 Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court decision, claimed she had been raped, thus making a denial of abortion more difficult to justify.  She later acknowledged that she lied about the circumstances of the pregnancy in order to gain sympathy for legalizing abortion.

Norma McCorvey worked in an abortion clinic after the Roe “victory.”  She reveals that without medical training, she routinely performed medical duties like administering anesthesia and drawing blood since “most abortionists do not want to spend the money to pay a specialist.”

Carol Everett, who later became a pro-life advocate even testifying for one of my bills, had previously run a Texas abortion mill where she “faked” medical records to protect the abortionists.  When her medical director killed a woman by perforating her uterus and then discharged his patient so he could go on a date, he instructed Everett to “change the blood pressure readings on Sheryl’s chart to normal.”  Everett would also take the victims of botched abortions to the emergency room in her own car because “an ambulance is terrible publicity in front of an abortion clinic.”  Everett admits that her clinic regularly performed abortions on women who were not pregnant to make money.

Nathanson mentions contracting with a certain laboratory they suspected of not examining tissue specimens. A colleague substituted aborted baby pregnancy parts with a piece of liver from a morgue and the pathology lab report came back: “PREGNANCY TISSUE.”


Rape and incest are horrible crimes.  It is bad enough that the foundation of legalized abortion through the courts and in the public’s mind was built upon fabrications and lies.  Politicians who claim to be “pro-life” should not offer amendments that pretend to protect life.

My views and voting record on protecting preborn children (and their mothers) from death by abortion are very clear.  I will vote “present” on the Governor’s amendment because I cannot in good conscience support language which ignores the moral argument that every life is precious.

Thank you,

Delegate Bob Marshall


Marshall 2011 House passed anti-abortion insurance Amendment to (SB1366):

“No health plan authorized by the Virginia Exchange may provide abortion coverage services; however, such prohibition shall not (i) prevent an approved health plan from reimbursing the costs of services of a physician and other services incurred in providing medical assistance to preserve the life of a pregnant woman provided that every possible measure shall be taken to preserve the life of the unborn child of the pregnant woman, or (ii) preclude an approved health plan from reimbursing the costs of services incurred in providing medical treatment to address previous fetal demise or intrauterine fetal death.” (


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