Michael Bodine

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15 May 2012

Virginia Makes Amends for Wrongful Imprisonment

Thomas Haynesworth spent 27 years in prison for crimes he didn’t commit. He was exonerated last December, and the General Assembly voted to award him more than a $1 million in relief. Is that sufficient compensation for an innocent man locked up for nearly three decades?

15 May 2012

States’ Compensation Laws Are All Over the Map

Twenty-seven states and Washington D.C., have laws to compensate people who have been wrongfully convicted and incarcerated.

05 Mar 2012

From Afar, Sen. Warner Talks to VCU Students

U.S. Sen. Mark Warner discussed national and state issues at a town hall meeting with students and faculty at Virginia Commonwealth University last week – without even leaving his Washington office. After an introduction by Dr. Niraj Verma, director of VCU’s L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs, Warner appeared on a projector screen in the Student Commons Theater.

29 Feb 2012

Senate Narrowly Approves Mandatory Ultrasound Bill

The Virginia Senate on Tuesday passed a bill that will require any woman seeking an abortion to undergo a mandatory ultrasound examination. House Bill 462 has been the focus of extensive debate during this year’s General Assembly. It even fell victim to national ridicule last week before being amended on the recommendation of Gov. Bob McDonnell.

24 Feb 2012

Legislators Craft Less Invasive Ultrasound Bill

Both chambers of the General Assembly started revising legislation forcing women to get a fetal ultrasound before an abortion after Gov. Bob McDonnell persuaded lawmakers not to require a vaginal probe as part of the procedure. That change was reflected in the revised version of House Bill 462 that the Senate Education and Health Committee approved Thursday on an 8-7 party-line vote.

17 Feb 2012

House Votes to Redefine ‘Triggerman’ Rule

The Virginia House of Delegates has advanced a bill that would make a broader range of criminals eligible for the death penalty. House Bill 389, proposed by Delegate Todd Gilbert, R-Woodstock, would redefine the “triggerman” rule in murder cases. The term “triggerman” refers strictly to the direct perpetrators of homicide, according to the current state law.

03 Feb 2012

Senate Approves Mandatory Ultrasound Legislation

The Virginia Senate has passed a bill requiring the use of ultrasound testing prior to the performance of an abortion. The bill, sponsored by Sen. Jill Holtzman Vogel, R-Winchester, now goes to the House of Delegates. If passed – a likely prospect in the GOP-controlled House – the measure will be sent to Gov. Bob McDonnell to be signed into law.

28 Jan 2012

Mandatory Ultrasound Bill Reaches Senate Floor

A bill requiring a woman to get an ultrasound before having an abortion has cleared a crucial committee and been sent to the Senate floor for a vote next week.
All eight Republicans on the Senate Education and Health Committee voted in favor of the measure, Senate Bill 484, which was sponsored by Sen. Jill Holtzman Vogel, R-Winchester. All seven Democrats on the panel voted against it.

25 Jan 2012

Being a Page is a New Chapter in Boy’s Life

For the next few months, 13-year-old Michael Peterson will be abiding by the orders of state legislators rather than listening to his teachers at Forest Middle School in Bedford County. The eighth-grader from the Bedford County town of Goode joins about 30 other boys and girls in the Virginia House of Delegates’ page program.

15 Jan 2012

Anti-abortion Bills Find New Life in General Assembly

The Virginia General Assembly has been a battleground over abortion rights for years. While many bills restricting abortion rights were killed in the Democratic-controlled Senate in the past, recent Republican gains in the upper chamber increase the odds that some of these bills will pass this session.