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VA Health Commissioner Resigns in Protest Over GOP's Draconian Abortion Clinic Rules

by: lowkell

Thu Oct 18, 2012 at 16:22:13 PM EDT


I wish we'd see a lot more courageous actions like this one, by Virginia Health Commissioner Dr. Karen Remley, over how draconinan new abortion clinic regulations by Gov. "Transvaginal Bob" and AG Ken "Kookinelli" have "created an environment in which my ability to fulfill my duties is compromised and in good faith I can no longer serve in my role."

Here's Tim Kaine's statement:

In 2008, I was seeking an energetic, dedicated and creative physician to serve as Virginia's Health Commissioner and I found an ideal candidate in Dr. Karen Remley. Her career in health care as a pediatrician, hospital administrator, and active member of the non-profit community made her uniquely qualified to serve. Karen was key in implementing some of my top public health priorities including a significant reduction in Virginia's infant mortality rate and the creation and implementation of a smoking ban in bars and restaurants. It's unfortunate that a political focus on limiting women's access to health care has prompted her resignation after many years of diligent and faithful service to the Commonwealth, but I know Karen has many years of service still ahead of her.
lowkell :: VA Health Commissioner Resigns in Protest Over GOP's Draconian Abortion Clinic Rules
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Meanwhile, Romney surrogate, VA Del. Barbara Comstock, says Lilly Ledbetter has "left-wing agenda" (0.00 / 0)


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Let's see if Barbara introduces legislation (0.00 / 0)
For HOD members to be paid differently based on gender...

[ Parent ]
NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia Statement (0.00 / 0)
Virginia Health Commissioner resigns after months of political bullying in abortion regulatory fight

Dr. Karen Remley cites an environment in which ability to fulfill her duties was compromised

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                   OCTOBER 18, 2012

Today, Dr. Karen Remley, M.D resigned from her role as the Virginia State Health Commissioner after citing an untenable environment created by the regulatory process of the state's first trimester abortion providers. Just last month, Attorney General Cuccinelli and other members of the McDonnell administration bullied the Virginia Board of Health, of which Remely oversees, into adopting medically-unnecessary regulations on Virginia's abortion providers.

In an email to colleagues, Dr. Remley stated that the regulatory fight had prevented her from fulfilling her intended duties as Health Commissioner. "Unfortunately, how specific sections of the Virginia Code pertaining to the development and enforcement of these regulations have been and continue to be interpreted has created an environment in which my ability to fulfill my duties is compromised and I can no longer in good faith continue in my role."

Dr. Remley's resignation comes more than a month after the Board of Health passed these regulations in an about-face move from its June vote to grandfather in existing facilities from the construction requirements. After the June meeting, the Attorney General sent the board a memo threatening not to represent them should their vote invoke a lawsuit against them - the latest in a series of actions designed to interject an anti-abortion ideology into what should be a scientific and evidenced-based medical regulatory process.

"Dr. Karen Remley dedicated herself to protecting the health of Virginians, with a particular focus on maternal and child health," said Tarina Keene, Executive Director of NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia.  "It is a testament of her commitment to the health of Virginian women and children that she would rather step down than enact a law that has nothing to do with protecting women's health and everything to do with limiting access to critical medical care."

"It just goes to show what happens when anti-abortion elected officials are allowed to put political ideology before public health and Virginia law," Keene continued. "Ken Cuccinelli and Bob McDonnell should be ashamed of the toxic political environment they have created since taking office. We bid Dr. Remely well and thank her for invaluable service. Meanwhile, our fight to protect Virginia women's health and rights continues."  



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I have nothing but high respect... (0.00 / 0)
... for Karen Remley. She served as a great health commissioner and oversaw a terrific public relations overhaul in the VDH system.

That being said, I wish that you could publish an article that doesn't resort to name-calling. It would garner you much more respect.


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The purpose of Blue Virginia is to cover Virginia politics from a progressive and Democratic perspective. This is a group blog and a community blog. We invite everyone to comment here, but please be aware that profanity, personal attacks, bigotry, insults, rudeness, frequent unsupported or off-point statements, "trolling" (NOTE: that includes outright lies, whether about climate science, or what other people said, or whatever), and "troll ratings abuse" (e.g., "troll" rating someone simply because you disagree with their argument) are not permitted and, if continued, will lead to banning. For more on trolling, see the Daily Kos FAQs. Also note that diaries may be deleted if they do not contain at least 2 solid paragraphs of original text; if not, please use the comments section of a relevant diary. For more on writing diaries, click here. Thanks, and enjoy!

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