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Pro-life group urges ‘Yes’ vote on West Virginia Amendment 1

PROMOTING AMENDMENT 1 — Mallory Quigley, of the pro-life group Susan B. Anthony List, speaks Tuesday in support of West Virginia Amendment 1 during a rally at Heritage Port in Wheeling. -- Joselyn King

WHEELING — The national pro-life group Susan B. Anthony List brought its message to Wheeling while urging a “yes” vote on West Virginia Amendment 1.

The group rallied Tuesday at Wheeling’s Heritage Port. A large group of supporters wore green shirts and carried pro-life signs.

Leading the charge was Delegate Kayla Kessinger, R-Fayette. Now 25 and among the youngest members of the House of Delegates, Kessinger said she made her first pro-life speech in public at age 19.

She said since 1993, the West Virginia Supreme Court ruled that state residents do not have a right of conscience when it comes to taxpayer-funded abortions. Since then, the state has paid for more than 35,000 abortion with more than $10 million in taxpayer dollars.

If passed, Amendment 1 would change the state constitution to say that nothing in the constitution guarantees the right to an abortion. The idea is to divert public money away from abortions, such as those that would be done with someone who was on Medicaid.

“West Virginia is a profoundly pro-life state,” Kessinger said. “When we bring up the issue that we are actually paying for abortions, people are mortified. They cannot believe our tax dollars are going to this procedure.

“On Nov. 6, West Virginia voters will have the opportunity to say, ‘No more. We will no longer have our rights of conscience violated,'” she said.

Among those in the group of supporters was Braden Dorsey, a student at Franciscan University.

“It was an opportunity to stand up for the defense of life,” he said. “That was very important to me.”

Prior to coming to Wheeling, the group held a similar rally in Bridgeport, W.Va. earlier in the day.

On Monday, they demonstrated in Beckley and in Charleston outside the campaign office of U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va.

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