Viagra regs paired with abortion rules

Sometimes a “nay” vote isn’t enough to show a lawmaker’s disdain for a bill. Sometimes only a flippant floor amendment will do.


Janet Howell

When the proposed legislation came up for a preliminary vote in the Senate Monday, Howell offered a floor amendment that just about floored her colleagues.

“Prior to prescribing medication for erectile dysfunction, a physician shall perform a digital rectal examination and a cardiac stress test,” Howell said, reading the amendment aloud. “Informed consent for these procedures shall be given at least 24 hours before the procedures are performed.

“I just think we should have a little gender equity here,” Howell added.

The amendment failed, though not by much, in a 19-21 vote.

The abortion bill, one of many bills conservatives are pushing in the Republican-controlled Senate this General Assembly session, is expected to pass the upper chamber in a final vote Tuesday.

Laura Vozzella covers Virginia politics for The Washington Post.
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