Kaine Breaks With Virginia Dems on Abortion: ‘I Don’t Think the Existing Law Needs to Be Changed’

Sen. Tim Kaine with fellow Democratic Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee members / Getty

Sen. Tim Kaine (D., Va.) defied Virginia Democrats when commenting Thursday on a state bill that would expand the ability of women to seek abortions up to the moments before birth.

"Delegate Tran has a bill to change the existing Virginia law. I support the existing Virginia law, which has been in place since the mid-70s," Kaine said during an interview with Daily Caller reporter Kerry Picket. "And it puts conditions on a third trimester abortion. I support the existing law, not the Tran bill. I don't think the existing law needs to be changed."

Democratic Del. Kathy Tran introduced a bill in the Virginia House of Delegates earlier this week aimed at scaling back restrictions on abortion in Virginia.

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When asked if he would comment on Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam's (D.) controversial comments about how after a child was born, the mother and the physician could have a "discussion" about whether the infant lives or dies, Kaine replied he would not "comment on comments."

"I'll just tell you the existing Virginia law, I think is the right law," Kaine said. "And it's consistent with Roe v. Wade, where the state is able to impose meaningful regulations on a third trimester pregnancy."

Picket asked if he thought Tran's proposal was radical, prompting Kaine to repeat that he supported the existing law.

"All I'll say is that I support the existing law and I don't think that it should be changed," he said.

Tran's bill stirred controversy after colleagues questioned her on Tuesday about its implications.

"Where it's obvious that a woman is about to give birth, she has physical signs that she's about to give birth, would that still be a point at which she could request an abortion if she was so certified?" Majority Leader Todd Gilbert (R.) asked during the presentation. "She's dilating."

Tran replied that was a decision the woman and her doctor would have to make before choosing to have an abortion. Gilbert asked specifically if the measure would allow for abortion right before birth.

"My bill would allow that, yes," Tran said.

In response, some Democrats have backed off the bill. One of its co-sponsors, Democratic Del. Dawn Adams, apologized for her initial support.

"I made a mistake, and all I know to do is to admit it, tell the truth, and let the chips fall where they may," she wrote. "If you follow my newsletter or have written to me to ask about my votes, you know that I do my best to read and research every bill I vote on. But I did not read a bill I agreed to co-patron and that wasn’t smart or typical. I will work harder and be better for it."