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Virginia Democrats Dismantle Abortion Restrictions as Bills Advance in State Legislature

(AP Photo)

RICHMOND, Va. - Virginia's newly empowered Democratic majority is celebrating the 47th anniversary of the Roe v Wade abortion ruling by reversing a number of restrictions placed on abortion by Republicans over the last decade.

The Virginia House on Monday advanced legislation that allows nurse practitioners and certified nurse-midwives to perform abortions during the first trimester of pregnancy.

"This law does not appear to limit when someone other than a physician can perform any kind of abortion," Virginia House Republican Leader Del. Todd Gilbert pointed out during the debate on the bill.

"These individuals are highly trained and qualified and, indeed Madame Speaker, some of them have to train under a physician for a period of time," Virginia House Democrat Leader Del. Charniele Herring responded. 

Democrats now control both houses of the legislature and governor's mansion.

The new majority also plan to put a stop to the Commonwealth's current 24-hour waiting period and requiring ultrasounds before abortions, which have proven successful in reducing the number of abortions.

Similar legislation is moving through the state senate.

Gov. Ralph Northam, a pediatric neurologist by trade, is expected to sign the legislation into law.

CORRECTION: This story originally stated that Virginia Democrats were also trying to remove the requirement that minors get parental consent before aborting their child. CBN News has confirmed that the measure is no longer part of the legislation.

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