Team Romney: Featuring Governor Bob McDonnell
Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell was an early member of Team Romney, announcing his endorsement in January when the Republican race was still very much undecided. Calling Romney a “results-oriented conservative,” McDonnell threw his support behind his fellow opponent of women’s health and actively began to campaign for him.
McDonnell is just as out of touch on women’s health as Mitt Romney, and he’s got the resume to prove it. As Democratic Party of Virginia Chairman Brian Moran said, “Bob McDonnell's attacks on women's rights have defined his entire career, just like they're defining his governorship today.”
As a state legislator, McDonnell sponsored or co-sponsored 35 pieces of legislation that undermined women’s health. He’s voted against common sense legislation that would help ensure women could access emergency contraception at their local pharmacy, and voted against allowing public universities to distribute emergency contraception. And as governor, he has continued that pattern.
When McDonnell first came into office as governor, his priorities included rejecting funding for comprehensive sex education and barring women from purchasing health insurance that
would cover abortion.
During the 2011 General Assembly, McDonnell fast-tracked a backdoor attempt to ban abortion in the state by pushing for excessive and onerous Targeted Regulations of Abortion Providers (TRAP) legislation to limit women’s access to comprehensive care. He did this on an “emergency” basis, limiting public comment and education on the issue.
Undoubtedly his most notable “achievement” opposing women’s health as governor was signing a mandatory ultrasound bill into law (shortly before publishing an op-ed that suggests he believes Americans should be in control of their own health care. Ironic, huh?) The law, which caused a national uproar, is an outrageous example of government overreach — requiring every woman seeking an abortion to have an ultrasound performed at least 24 hours in advance. It has nothing to do with supporting women’s health in Virginia, and everything to do with politicians and lawmakers thinking they know better than women and their doctors, but that’s exactly the type of attitude that Mitt Romney has when it comes to women’s health. Romney wants to “get rid of” Planned Parenthood, he wants your employer to be able to decide what can and can’t be covered on your health care plan, and he believes that the landmark case of Griswold v. Connecticut — which overruled the state’s right to ban contraception — was wrong.
Of course McDonnell is an integral part of Team Romney; they’re two of a kind and just as out of touch on women’s health issues.