VA Governor Rejects Federal Funds for Abstinence Programs in Schools

The following are excerpts from an November 13, 2007 article appearing on

“Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine Makes State the 14th to Reject Abstinence Funds”
By Steven Ertelt, – November 13, 2007

Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine made his state the fourteenth to reject federal funds for abstinence education. The decision, which affects nearly 15 nonprofit programs, raises the number of states that have rejected the funds to help teenagers avoid abortions by initially avoiding sexual relations.

Saying it is part of his effort to reduce the state’s alleged budget deficit, Governor Tim Kaine has chosen to eliminate $275,000 of funding for abstinence education programs in Virginia’s public schools.

Although Kaine insisted the reasons were largely financial, Virginia’s comprehensive sexual education programs will not see a cut in funding.

“The governor wants to see us funding programs that are evidence-based,” said Delacey Skinner, the governor’s communication director.”

Kaine’s office cited the recent study by Mathematica, whose sweeping conclusions about abstinence were based on data from fewer than one percent of the programs.

Many are criticizing the timing of the announcement, which was obviously postponed to minimize the political damage to Democrats during last week’s elections. Abortion advocates took over the state Senate there.

The governor’s strategy may work in the short term, but leaders like Senator Ken Cuccinelli (R) say the debate is far from over. He and other social conservatives have promised to make reinstating funding for abstinence education a top priority when the legislature convenes in January.

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