va hb 1677 gets pulled...
January 12, 2005 11:10 AM
Last week, the web went nuts over the proposed Virginia state bill HB 1677, which was theoretically intended to bump up existing penalties for dumping newborn babies but could easily be read as requiring police reports for any miscarriage or abortion.
Assuming that the intent was only to do the former, it was a pretty spurious bill to begin with. Callously put, one incident in a year or two is a very small situation to prompt a new law. But given the language, with it's shaky implications for reproductive freedom, I'm glad to see this one got jumped on so quickly.
The end result? The bill got pulled. See Democracy for Virginia's coverage for further news on the story. The weird thing, though, is that the delegate (Cosgrove, of Chesapeake) responsible for introducing this bill essentially got huffy with the internet for calling him out on his badly-worded bill. His back-tracking ranged from "oh, it was the police's fault" to "no one called/emailed/asked ME" (I know I did, with no response) to "I never meant THAT", without ever accepting responsibility for it.
Is this the best we can expect from our legislators? Well Timed Period reflects on just how sad that is. Or is this the best we demand? Are our standards that low? Cosgrove ran unopposed last time he was elected; it sounds like Chesapeake's just fine with sloppy law-writing, and he's clearly not all that chastised.
I'm just thrilled to hear Cosgrove's also sponsoring a proposed constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage, too. Maybe it will be written badly enough to effectively cancel out the Affirmation of Marriage Act from last year (although fortunately a repeal is already in the works).
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