Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell pubicly withdrew his support for Delegate Bob Marshall’s Mandatory Vagina Penetration Bill.
In a statement on Wednesday, Gov. McDonnell said that he believes “there is no need to direct by statute that further invasive ultrasound procedures be done,” and “mandating an invasive procedure in order to give informed consent is not a proper role for th state.”
Conservative blogs are on fire criticizing the governor for taking a position that is not aligned with mainstream conservatism. The blog Big Government said that the governor is “hanging VA GOP delegates out to dry,” and Hot Air said “it’s not OK for politicians to be disingenuous about what they beleive or about the facts of an issue.” In all, there’s a general sense of both surprise and betrayal for the conservatives in the arena.
As a progressive resident of Virginia, I can’t help but be glad the governor switched his position. While I don’t agree with his outlook on the issue personally, I think that if he continues to support public opinion even when it’s overtly contrary to his own views, we will have someone who may still rise to the top of Republican politics. Truly representing your contituents even when it’s not convenient for you is something that has gone the way of the dodo in the recent years of hot-button social issues being earmarked into ambiguous legislation.
Whether the switch was in response to a public outcry against SB 484 or it was the outcome of a discreet political strategy, one thing is for certain: if conservative Republicans continue to support legislation that is different from their personal moral views, we might end up with real, objective politics for a change.
Governor McDonnell’s office will be receiving tons of emails from conservative bloggers looking to mobilize a counter-action encouraging him to not back down. At this point in the game, however, it may be too late.