Time to get more attention on Kos re the only state with critical state-wide races this fall.
Here is what's at stake. The latest from WaPo on Kilgore's stance on abortion:
Advocates for victims of sexual assault on Thursday assailed statements made by Republican gubernatorial candidate Jerry W. Kilgore during campaigns in 1997 and 2001, saying he showed a profound disregard for the suffering women endure immediately after an attack.
In a news conference organized by Kilgore's opponent, Democratic Lt. Gov. Timothy M. Kaine, three sexual abuse counselors discussed the Republican's assessment that victims of rape and incest should be allowed abortions only if they report the crime within seven days.
"It's not only hateful and cruel, it's also impractical," said Jim McKinley-Oakes, a social worker who has counseled victims of sexual assault for more than three decades. "It's an invasion of their privacy not unlike the act of rape itself."
More on the flip...
Is Kaine a diehard liberal on abortion? No. He has backed notification laws and opposes a late-term procedures. However, he has pledged to keep abortion legal.
On the other hand, Kilgore has repeatedly said he wants to criminalize abortion, and would only allow abortions in case of rape or incest only if the sexual assualt is reported within 7 days. Again, from the Post:
In 1997, when he lost a bid to be attorney general, he was quoted in The Washington Times as saying he opposes abortion unless the mother's life is in danger and "supports exceptions for rape and incest if the woman reports the crime to police within a week."
During his winning campaign for attorney general in 2001, several news organizations reported that Kilgore supported exceptions for rape and incest victims, but only if the victim promptly reported the crime.
Kilgore aides said Thursday that he stands by his position.
Raising Kaine has more here on this position:
Let's get real here. Let's say you're a 15-year-old Virginia girl repeatedly raped by your grandfather. Now, 30 days after the last rape, you realize you're pregnant. You go to your mother and tell her what happened. At first, she doesn't believe you, but after a doctor's visit the pregnancy is confirmed. Now, of course, you all want to a) cut off grandpa's balls; and b) get an abortion immediately. But let's say Jerry Kilgore is governor (God forbid!) and "Taliban Bob" McDonnell is Attorney General. And let's say an ultra-right-wing Supreme Court (wich very well could come to pass in the next month or two) decides to overturn Roe v. Wade, sending abortion questions back to states like Virginia. Now, Jerry Kilgore says you can't have an abortion, so you've got to carry your grandfather's incest child to term.
Now, what if you're a 30-year-old woman who has been raped by an abusive, violent, crazy-ass ex-boyfriend, but you're afraid to report the crime because he's threatened to kill you if you do. So, you agonize for a couple of months, then decide you simply can't live with the thought of continuing on with this pregnancy born from an act of violence. But wait, Jerry Kilgore - a right-wing white male with no clue or compassion for women -- tells you, "oh no, you can't have an abortion, it's past our state-mandated 7-day waiting period. You're shit out of luck. Have the damn baby!"
Sorry to be so blunt, but that's exactly what we're talking about here. The question for all women of Virginia is this: would you rather have Jerry Kilgore making your most personal decisions for you, or would you rather have those decisions made in consultation with your doctor, your counselor, your priest/minister/rabbi, or what?
Somehow, Kilgore is simultaneously denying that he wants to criminalize abortion ("I'm not going to support legislation that criminalizes women," he said Thurs), as he seeks to become governor of a pro-choice state. He's not faring so well under the scrutiny:
The host of NBC's "Meet the Press" had explained that a U.S. Supreme Court with new conservatives appointed by President Bush might reverse its 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling legalizing abortion. If that happens and the General Assembly passes a bill outlawing abortion except for rape, incest or the mother's life, Russert asked Kilgore, would he sign it into law?
"It's a simple question," Russert insisted.
"My response is that's a hypothetical. You don't know what any Supreme Court in the future is going to do," Kilgore replied.
"If the Virginia legislature passed a tax increase, would you veto it or sign it?" Russert persisted.
"I would veto it," Kilgore answered.
"That's a hypothetical question," Russert interjected, cutting Kilgore off as about 500 business leaders and politicians--most of them sympathetic to Kaine--laughed at Kilgore's expense.
Anyway, this race is heating up. While the focuse on Katrina and Iraq are warranted, we are entering the home stretch in Virginia. Please tune in!