...As for Creigh on choice, his record is crystal clear -- just look at his votes. You are right -- his position is vitrually identical to yours, I believe.
As for being 100% pro choice -- abortions -- even late term abortions -- ought to be a decision solely between a woman and her health care provider in all cases. Exactly what part of that formulation is objectionable?
Or, do you think it appropriate for the General Assembly to decide what kinds of medical care ought to be available to you.
The whole late-term abortion issue (the so-called misnamed partial birth abortions) is only so much bullshit that the anti-choice movement uses as a wedge issue. My understanding is that virtually every late term abortion that occurs is because of health risk to the mother, although if McDonnell has his way, some medically necessary procedures may be criminalized by legislative fiat.
For the record, my personal position on abortion is that it should only be performed in very rare cases, such as serious danger to the health of the mother or siblings in a multiple pregnancy. While I am Catholic, I can easily base such a position on scientific or humanist grounds. However, I do not believe that it would be wise to impose such a conservative (or arguably progressive) position on a secular society with widely divergent opinions on the matter. If abortion is completely banned, abortion rates can even go higher -- see modern day Brazil as an example. Outside of requiring monthly maternity tests (which believe it or not has been practiced by a country, I think it was Romania), how would you enforce such a ban? Abortions can be easily performed by cheap pills which are used for other legal indications. An early abortion in Brazil is asking someone for a pill which costs about a dollar (the same method in the U.S. costs about $400, because of highly suggested medical monitoring).
That being said, "100% choice" is a really bad idea. We don't have "100% choice" in many other less controversial areas of the law--such as, where can you cross the street-- so why should we have "100% choice" on abortion. We have pedestrian crosswalks to: 1) protect the pedestrian, and 2) protect others. Similarly, reasonable abortion restrictions protect both the mother, and another (the fetus/child), from the influences of others (a waiting period can help in this regard), doctors which perform abortions for profit taking motives (e.g., second opinion requirements), and from procedures which are dangerous to the mother's health (Dr. Tiller's MOLD technique).
Susan Kellom, the head of the Alexandria Democratic Committee, recently indicated in a advertisement for a August 10th event that Deeds was 100% pro-choice. Deeds' blog comments indicate that he is 100% pro-choice, i.e., "up to a woman, her family, her doctor and her spiritual advisor". (Note: interesting that the decision is also "up to" her family and spiritual advisor.) I certainly do not see the moderate abortion position in Deeds that I suspected, e.g., based on his prior votes on partial birth abortions. Instead, I see a candidate who would support extreme legislation such as the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA), legislation which could arguably wipe all reasonable legislation off the books, including legislation which could prevent elective third trimester abortions.
Also, I believe you are greatly mistaken about the past with regards to late-term abortions. It is my understanding that Dr. Tiller (and likely others) performed many third trimester abortions that were elective in nature, usually relying on "mental health of the mother" for a rationale. How else, in 1995, could Dr. Tiller "have some experience with late terminations: about 10,000 patients between 24 and 36 weeks and something like 800 fetal anomalies between 26 and 36 weeks in the past 5 years." See http://www.dr-tiller.com/elect...
I somewhat agree with you today that the late-term abortion issue is a "[BS]" "wedge" issue -- however, if we adopt 100% pro-choice, we could easily go back to a time when it was not an issue. If Dr. Tiller's own words were correct, he performed 9,200 abortions on viable children/fetuses lacking fetal anomalies in a five year period. For each of these abortions, he would receive a sizable payment -- for example, before he was murdered (a reprehensible act) he would receive $5000 or more for a late-term procedure -- a late-term procedure which appeared to be more dangerous for the woman than even natural childbirth.
After spending 15 days in the NICU, and seeing children of 24 week gestation, I cannot in anyway support a return to the effectively "100% choice" policies of the 1990s. After seeing the pain my wife went through in childbirth, I cannot support making perhaps uninformed mothers and profit-hungry "doctors" 100% responsible for making late-term abortion choices, when such "choice" often results in more pain than childbirth in a hospital. There needs to be reasonable regulation. So yes, I would have the General Assembly decide a mechanism by which an elective (not medically necessary) third-trimester, or even second-trimester abortion, would be permitted or conducted.
In short, I think one is burying their head in the sand if they think that "100% choice" is a Progressive value, let alone a mainstream value. Most of "Progressive" Europe does not permit elective abortions beyond the first trimester, while a "100% choice" (or FOCA) regime practically allows all abortion until natural childbirth. But, even in the U.S., most agree that, at least, a third trimester fetus/child should be protected in almost all circumstances, with rare exceptions, such as to save the life of the mother and/or other children in a multiple pregnancy.
However, such a child has no protection under our current Constitution -- it is generally up to the states under Roe v. Wade to provide such protections. This is what concerns me about Deeds' words on abortion to date. Words matter. He should use them to clarify his position on abortion.
Thanks again for your comments,