Virginia— Today, Planned Parenthood Action Fund-endorsed candidates Rep. Abigail Spanberger and Rep. Jennifer Wexton won their re-elections for the U.S. House of Representatives. Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia congratulates them on their hard-earned victories.
As this election proved, voters want elected officials who are bold champions for abortion access. Reps. Spanberger and Wexton put abortion rights at the forefront of their campaigns, talking about their commitment to protecting abortion access on the campaign trail, running ads focused on reproductive freedom, and proudly standing up for our rights.
In Congress, Rep. Wexton co-sponsored and Rep. Spanberger voted for the Women’s Health Protection Act to restore abortion rights at the federal level. Both congresswomen have been fierce advocates for Virginians' reproductive health and rights. Since the Supreme Court ended our federal constitutional right to abortion, these champions have proven critical in the fight to protect and restore our rights and stop further attacks on abortion. According to a recent Roanoke College poll, 88% of Virginians feel that abortion should be legal under some or all circumstances.
Reps. Wexton and Spanberger defeated Republican anti-abortion candidates Hung Cao and Yesli Vega, respectively. Cao made his anti-abortion views clear, stating that he believes that life “begins at conception,” echoing the language used by State Sen. Amanda Chase in introducing her total abortion ban. Yesli Vega went so far as to question the ability of women to become pregnant due to rape in her opposition to abortion rights. The voters of Virginia clearly rejected these anti-abortion sentiments.
While it appears Rep. Elaine Luria will come up short in her bid for re-election, she overperformed in a tough district post-redistricting and in the face of historic headwinds. Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia thanks Rep. Luria for her service and for championing reproductive rights in Congress and on the campaign trail.
Statement from Jamie Lockhart, Executive Director of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia:
“Reproductive freedom proved to be one of the defining issues in Virginia this election. Virginians re-elected abortion rights champions Reps. Abigail Spanberger and Jennifer Wexton, further proving that we won’t back down when politicians try to come for our rights. Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia will continue to fight for reproductive freedom for all Virginians, no matter what, and we’re excited to continue to work with Reps. Spanberger and Wexton.
The threat to abortion access in Virginia is not theoretical – it is real, and we must keep fighting like hell to protect our rights. Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia will ensure that abortion rights remain top-of-mind for everyone, including legislators entering the 2023 General Assembly Session and voters casting ballots in next year’s legislative races, which will dictate the state of reproductive rights in Virginia.“
Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia (PPAV) is a statewide advocacy organization whose mission is to preserve and broaden access to reproductive health care through legislation, public education, electoral activity and litigation in the Commonwealth of Virginia. PPAV works to ensure that individuals and families have the freedom, information, and ability to make their own informed reproductive choices.