This is Ed Gillespie, the Republican candidate for Virginia governor.
He was recently endorsed by Donald Trump (on Twitter, of course).
As election day grows closer and closer, it’s critical to understand how dangerous Ed Gillespie is for Virginians.
Gillespie is an extreme politician pushing a dangerous agenda that threatens women. It’s clear that Gillespie’s just plain out of touch with the rest of the Commonwealth.
Here are six key things you need to know about Ed Gillespie:
1) He wants to “defund” Planned Parenthood
He’s dodged the question for years, but now we have confirmation. If Gillespie is elected in November, he said he would sign a bill that would block access to care at Planned Parenthood health centers in Virginia.
Gillespie's plan could take away birth control, life saving cancer screenings, and HIV testing for the over 23,000 Virginians who depend on Planned Parenthood health centers for their essential health care.
2) He wants to overturn Roe. v Wade
As early as 2012, Gillespie applauded fellow Republicans for saying that Roe V. Wade was “wrongly decided.” Then, at a candidates’ forum this past April, Gillespie was pressed on whether he wants to see Roe v. Wade overturned. Ed Gillespie made it clear that he would like ban abortion, saying,
“I would like to see abortion be banned because I think it is a taking of an innocent human life.”
— Ed Gillespie
3) He holds extreme views on birth control
Gillespie holds extreme views on birth control — views that aren’t very #InformED. In 2012, he called birth control a “sin” and advocated to block access to no-copay birth control. He also seems to see no difference between abortion and contraception, and has inaccurately equated Plan B to ”abortion-inducing pills.”
Gillespie also once sat on the board of Conscience Cause, a group that was formed to take away the Affordable Care Act’s birth control benefit.
In short, every time the topic of contraception comes up, Gillespie’s answers are awkward or flat-out false.
4) He’s a TRAP law champion
Gillespie has also said he would restore Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers, or TRAP laws, on abortion providers.
The point of TRAP laws are to impose costly and medically unnecessary building requirements and other burdensome stipulations that reduce access to abortion services.
Gov. Terry McAuliffe has fought back against medically unnecessary TRAP laws in Virginia, which make it harder for women to access safe, legal abortion. But if Gillespie becomes governor, he’ll bring them back.
5) He’s against the ACA
Ed Gillespie once called the Affordable Care Act, which has helped millions more people access the health care they need, “a monstrosity” — which is appalling by itself. Additionally, he refused to come out against the failed Trumpcare bill that would have “defunded” Planned Parenthood and taken health care away from millions of Americans.
6) He’s on “the Trump train”
In addition to having Trump’s full-throated endorsement, Gillespie is supportive of Donald Trump and the administration’s policies that harm women — like Trump’s recent order to weaken the ACA’s birth control benefit, which helped 62 million gain access to contraception.
And let’s not forget that Trump has systematically filled key positions with anti-science, anti-women’s health extremists. This includes people like CMS Administrator Seema Verma, who oversees Medicaid and Medicaid, yet believes maternity coverage should be optional.
Here's the bottom line
If Gillespie wins in November, Virginians will have to face four years of dangerous attacks against the vital health care that women throughout the Commonwealth rely on. Virginians will not stand for it and will send a clear message on election day.
Election day in Virginia is fewer than three months away. VOTE in November to elect Ralph Northam — a women’s health champion — for governor!