McAuliffe Wins Gubernatorial Debate, Champions Access to Health Care and Reproductive Rights
For Immediate Release: Sept. 16, 2021 (Updated: Sept. 16, 2021, 6:01 p.m.)
RICHMOND, Va - Tonight, Terry McAuliffe won the gubernatorial debate against Glenn Youngkin. While Youngkin ran away from his radical anti-health and reproductive rights views, McAulifffe continued to stand up for the health and rights of Virginians — including access to safe, legal abortion.
Statement from Jamie Lockhart, executive director of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia:
“The choice in the Virginia gubernatorial race could not be clearer. Terry McAuliffe is the only candidate who Virginians can trust to protect their access to health care and expand access to sexual and reproductive care — including safe and legal abortion. As he said tonight, “I’ve been very clear, and I’ll say this again to every woman watching tonight: I will protect your rights. I believe a woman oughta make a decision about her own reproductive rights. I will support those. I was a brick wall while I was governor. I vetoed all the bills that he [Youngkin] would propose that ban abortion and defund Planned Parenthood.”
In contrast, Glenn Youngkin relied on desperate fearmongering and misleading accusations because his own record on reproductive rights, as he infamously admitted on camera, is out-of-touch with the vast majority of Virginians. Voters will remember who stood up for their health and rights as they head to the ballot box.”
In July, the American Independent reported on a video showing Youngkin, when asked about his position on banning abortion and defunding Planned Parenthood, saying "I'm gonna be really honest with you, the short answer is, in this campaign, I can't… When I'm governor, and I have a majority in the House, we can start going on offense. But as a campaign topic, sadly, that, in fact, won’t win my independent votes that I have to get.”
In July, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia endorsed Terry McAuliffe for governor. During his time as governor, Terry McAuliffe stood up for the thousands of people who turn to Planned Parenthood for services, vetoing the defunding bill two years in a row. Gov. McAuliffe’s veto ensured that Virginians could continue to access high-quality, affordable, and non-judgmental health care, including annual wellness visits, STI testing, birth control, and cancer screenings. Gov. McAuliffe has demonstrated a clear commitment to expanding access to care by proposing the Contraceptive Grant Program, which provides free birth control for Virginians with low incomes.