WV Gov. Tomblin issues veto to 20-week abortion ban bill


WV Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin announced March 3 he has vetoed House Bill 2568, the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, citing constitutional concerns.

Tomblin said, in his message about the veto, he would urge the Legislature to come to a compromise on the bill.

“As reflected in my voting record during my time in the Legislature, I believe there is no greater gift of love than the gift of life. As governor, I must take into consideration a number of factors when reviewing legislation, including its constitutionality,” Tomblin said in a statement about his veto. “At the start of the regular session, I urged members of the Legislature to consider a compromise that would help us establish legislation that would pass constitutional muster. Having received a substantially similar bill to the one vetoed last year on constitutional grounds, I must veto House Bill 2568.”

The full Legislature passed the bill Feb. 25, despite an attempt to change the ban to 22 weeks rather than 20. Sen. Corey Palumbo, D-Kanawha, said the change would have made the bill constitutional.

“Bills similar to this have been passed in at least 10 states; I think three of them have been challenged and all three have been held unconstitutional,” Palumbo said. “According to evidence out there, I don’t see anyway this bill would be found to be constitutional.”

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