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(LifeSiteNews) — A Virginia Democrat stated last Friday that “abortion bans are in direct conflict with Jewish law” while speaking in support of a bill designed to secure access in the state.

Delegate Eileen Filler-Corn, who is Jewish, defended her stance on abortion by arguing that “reproductive freedoms are religious freedoms” and claiming that her faith supports the murder of the unborn.

“Abortion bans like the ones proposed by members of this chamber are not just dangerous, they are also an infringement upon the religious liberty of thousands of Virginians,” Filler-Corn said. “Mr. Speaker, abortion bans are in direct conflict with Jewish law.”

“Judaism values life and affirms that protecting existing life is paramount. In fact, even under the strictest, most traditional interpretation, Jewish law prioritizes the life and health and well-being of the mother.”

“When working to respect the faith of others, one can’t just pick and choose those aspects of the faith that they want to respect while overlooking others,” Filler-Corn continued. “Reproductive freedoms, Mr. Speaker, are religious freedoms — one cannot exist without the other. Religious liberty and the separation of religion and state must be protected and preserved in order to maintain our democratic society.”

The delegate also described her efforts to converse with Jewish leaders as well as other religious leaders, eventually constructing a group of “interfaith clergy from multiple regions of the Commonwealth for public conversations throughout the year.” Filler-Corn explained that “the Virginia Interfaith Coalition for Reproductive Liberty was formed to provide a platform for people of faith to discuss their concerns about the proposed abortion bans.” She added that a common theme brought up throughout discussions was that “abortion bans are a violation of our religious freedom.”

At the end of her comments, Filler-Corn appealed to fellow delegates to “take into consideration the religious liberty of all Virginians.” She asked them to “please vote to guarantee the ability of each Virginian to weigh in on their right for reproductive liberty.”

LifeSiteNews has reached out to Rabbi Noson Shmuel Leiter, founder of Torah Jews for Decency, and Rabbi Yahuda Levin for comment but has not yet received responses.

SJ 255, the bill Filler-Corn was supporting in her speech, is a constitutional amendment to secure a “fundamental right” to abortion in Virginia’s state constitution.

The legislation seeks to ensure “that every individual has the fundamental right to reproductive freedom [sic] and that the right to make and effectuate one’s own decisions about all matters related to one’s pregnancy cannot be denied, burdened, or otherwise infringed upon by the Commonwealth.”

The bill, which passed in the House during a vote on Friday afternoon, also prohibits the state from “penalizing, prosecuting, or otherwise taking adverse action against an individual” for committing, obtaining, or assisting in the procurement of an abortion “unless justified by a compelling state interest.”

Virginia law currently permits abortion on demand until roughly 26 weeks. Although Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin has shown consistent support for pro-life legislation, Democrats controlling the state Senate have voiced their plans to block pro-life bills. In the current legislative session, all bills proposed by the Republican-led House to protect the unborn have not passed the Senate.


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