Pro-choice advocate questions motives of AG and others

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The Executive Director of West Virginia Free, a group that works to further the reproductive rights of women, says those trying to “shine a light” on West Virginia’s abortion clinics are not doing so for the right reasons.

“If this was good for a woman’s health, we’d be out there with them,” said Margaret Chapman-Pomponio.

“We’ve been promoting women’s health since 1989 at West Virginia Free and, many of our supporters, long before that.”

Earlier this week, officials with the Family Policy Council of West Virginia held a press conference at the State Capitol with members of the Legislature to talk about possible new regulations for abortion providers.

They’ve launched a new campaign called “Illuminate” to push for legislative action on such regulations.  The campaign follows a recently filed lawsuit alleging a botched abortion at one of West Virginia’s two stand alone abortion clinics.

At the same time, state Attorney General Patrick Morrisey is currently accepting public comments, through his website, on how abortion providers are regulated in West Virginia.  He has said he is simply gathering information.

But Chapman-Pomponio said she thinks the effort is about much more than that.

“These are folks who don’t want a woman in West Virginia to be able to get an abortion.  They don’t want any woman in the United States, or in the world for that matter, to have access to safe, legal abortion care,” she said on Tuesday’s MetroNews “Talkline.”

She said those targeting the two clinics are not doing it because of concerns about women’s health.  “They’re doing what they can to chip away and target health care providers that provide abortion care.”

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