Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin is conducting a 2024 litmus test on abortion by urging state Republicans to support a 15-week ban ahead of next month’s legislative elections. 

The governor is helping GOP candidates running in Virginia’s Nov. 7 elections for all 140 seats in the General Assembly potentially align themselves with a 15-week limit on abortion with exceptions for rape, incest and the life of the pregnant women as a “reasonable” and “common” approach, The Washington Post reported. 

A $1.4 million ad blitz funded by Youngkin’s Spirit of Virginia group promoted the policy, saying, “Here’s the truth: There is no ban.”

Next month’s election in Virginia is the only major race in the country ahead of the 2024 presidential and congressional elections, so Youngkin’s strategy is viewed a critical test for national Republicans who have struggled on a common pro-life message since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. 


Though Democrats running for Virginia’s General Assembly out-raised Republicans in September, Youngkin has drawn from his national fundraising – which has seen surges amid the governor’s own flirtation with a potential presidential run – to throw support behind helping the state GOP maintain control of the House of Delegates and flip the Democratic-controlled Senate, the Post reported. 

If he succeeds, it will give him more leeway to push a conservative agenda not only including limits on abortions but also tax cuts, stricter criminal justice laws and more lenient environmental restrictions.

In the 2022 elections, national Republicans were caught flat-footed on the abortion issue, while Democrats successfully rallied support in many races after the Dobbs ruling.

“There was no Republican response, none, and the results were tough in the ’22 midterms,” Zack Roday, a spokesman for Youngkin’s Spirit of Virginia PAC, told the Post. “Republicans didn’t talk about where they were. They didn’t swat back the misstatements, the sometimes outright lies.”

Taking a beating by some pro-life groups, GOP presidential candidate and former President Donald Trump said it could be detrimental for the Republican Party in 2024 if they don’t reach a consensus on abortion, describing Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ support of a 6-week abortion ban as a “terrible thing.” 

Youngkin’s strategy, which seeks to provide a roadmap for how to tackle abortion on the state and federal level, could prove risky to his own national prospects, as not many Republican candidates running in his state have embraced the 15-week restriction ahead of November. The media tracking firm AdImpact found that abortion is mentioned in 42% of ads aired by Democratic House and Senate candidates in Virginia through Oct. 17, compared to just 3% of those aired by Republicans. 


Virginia Democrats in turn have flooded ad dollars into arguing Youngkin’s strategy equates to a “ban.” 

“I hope they keep it up,” Democratic Party of Virginia chairwoman Susan Swecker told the Post of Youngkin’s ad campaign. “We’re the only Southern state that doesn’t ban abortion and [protecting access] is something that resonates across the commonwealth in all social, economic and diverse communities.”

Google search engine


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here