VIRGINIA (DC News Now) — Gov. Glenn Youngkin said he was “frustrated” with state Democrats after a swift rejection Thursday of his proposed 15-week ban on abortion. He said he wants to revisit the issue that both Democrats and Republicans agree on the state.
In an exclusive interview with DC News Now, the first-term Republican governor who has been mentioned as a possible presidential candidate in two years said that
“Over 80 percent of Virginians have expressed a view that Republicans and Democrats should find consensus on this issue,” Youngkin said. “And consensus on this issue is when a child can feel pain at 15 weeks and to protect life then.”
The governor said this has been an issue of grave concern to both Democrats and Republicans in Virginia and that Senate Democrats aren’t listening.
That didn’t stop the state Senate subcommittee from denying Youngkin’s push for a 15-week ban.
“I believe they’re way out of touch and there’s still a path forward in the House,” he said. “I sure hope they start listening to the folks that elected them to come represent them.”
When asked if he saw his bill tossed in the garbage can that was caught in pictures, Youngkin said, “I didn’t see it. In all candor, I don’t believe they’re listening to Virginians and I’ve been doing the work of the people opposed to ignoring them.”
The governor rejected the view by his critics that this push for an abortion ban is to bolster his bona fides in the GOP presidential primary.
“Well first of all, I think you hit it exactly right, it’s my critics, which they’re looking for ways in order to take people’s attention off of, I think, the great success that we’ve had,” he said.
That success, Youngkin said, is well earned with tax cuts, a state surplus and funding for law enforcement.
“I think we’ve had a great first year, I’m very please with what we’ve got accomplished and all of it has to be done on a bipartisan basis,” he said. “We had $4 billion in tax cuts last year and Virginians are ready for another billion.”
And what of his purported presidential aspirations?
“I am 100 percent focused on the commonwealth of Virginia,” Youngkin said. “And I’m deeply humbled by this question when it’s asked. I think it reflects that fact that we are making great progress in the commonwealth.”