creative commons

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — More than 1,000 people have rallied at the Virginia Capitol against legislation in the Democratic-controlled General Assembly that would ease restrictions on abortion access.

Speakers urged the crowd Thursday to ask lawmakers to vote against the bills they argued would undo protections for pregnant women.

Measures that have passed the House and Senate would undo restrictions including a 24-hour waiting period before an abortion, as well a requirement that women seeking an abortion undergo an ultrasound and counseling.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia's health commissioner is recommending that the state look anew at regulations enacted under the McDonnell administration that established hospital-style building requirements for abortion clinics.

In a letter Wednesday to Gov. Terry McAuliffe, Dr. Marissa Levine recommends that the requirements be reviewed and updated.

McAuliffe ordered the regulatory review of the clinic rules this spring.

Opponents of the clinic rules said they are medically unnecessary and threaten the existence of some of Virginia's 18 abortion clinics.

Sylvia "Cookie" Harris, the wife of Eastern Shore congressman Andy Harris was remembered yesterday as a "right to life torchbearer".

Her anti-abortion efforts ranged from the neighborhoods in Baltimore to the halls of the state capital.

Her funeral was held at a large cathedral in Baltimore where it was attended by around 1,000 people.

She died sudden last Thursday -- three days before her 58th birthday.