Anti-Choice Groups Again Divided Over Rape Exception

One of the very first things the Republicans are trying to pass now that they control both houses of Congress is a ban on abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy, because…priorities. But the bill contains an exception for rape, which is once again dividing the anti-choice leaders and organizations.

Now that Blackburn has reintroduced the bill with a rape and incest exception included, the Personhood Alliance and Georgia Right to Life are coming out to oppose it. In a statement yesterday, the Personhood Alliance’s president, Daniel Becker, lambasted Republicans for introducing a “message bill” with what he believes is the wrong message: “This a message bill. The president has already vowed to veto the bill, so why, in a Republican led House and Senate, send out a message that fails to embrace the essence of the pro-life movement.”

And you have to love how disingenuous this statement from Georgia Right to Life is:

“Last Fall, voters sent a clear message that they’re fed up with political gamesmanship and lack of courage,” [GRTL Executive Director Genevieve] Wilson said. “There’s absolutely no need to compromise principles on any bill, especially one that President Obama has already said he will veto.”…

GRTL supported the 2013 version until an exception for rape and incest was added – which H.R.36 also has. We should pass bills that protect all children in the womb who feel pain, not just those conceived by consent.

Gotta love that argument, the absurd idea that voters “sent a clear message” of something vague and meaningless and therefore you should support this bill that an overwhelming percentage of Americans would not support. 83% of Americans think that even if abortion was banned, there should be an exception for rape.

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  • Michael Heath

    Georgia Right to Life’s position:

    We should pass bills that protect all children in the womb who feel pain, not just those conceived by consent.

    I’ve yet to see an anti-abortion rights argument that includes exceptions for rape and incest that’s also logically consistent with the primary premises of the so-called pro-life movement’s arguments.

    Once you’ve conceded that access to abortion for women who are pregnant due to rape or incest is deserving of government protection, then the anti-abortion rights arguments that are promoted are exposed as being fallacious arguments. That’s for the very reason noted in Georgia Right to Life’s argument I quote here.

    Supporting exceptions for rape and incest also validate the cogency of the pro-abortion rights arguments that are both most popular with the public and consistent with Roe and Casey.

  • moarscienceplz

    GRTL appears to be six people. Three of them are women, but all three look to be past their childbearing years. How inclusive.

  • Crimson Clupeidae

    It’s part of their laser like focus on the economy……

  • eric

    Agree with Michael Heath. The exception really undermines the “this is murder of an innocent human being” message. Its going to be hard to convince someone that you sincerely believe that if you’re willing to give exceptions for anything other than a risk of death to the woman. To paraphrase an old sexist joke, if you do that then we’ve already established you are pro-choice, we’re just negotiating the terms of the choice.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    Us Conservatives sent Conservative Republicans to DC with a mandate to end legal abortion. I’m surprised you people didn’t get the message. After all, the entire last election was about that issue that we* studiously avoided.

    Now all we have to do is get this issue (on which a majority of Americans agree that there should be no abortions ever except mine because I have perfectly valid reasons for it, while other people are just sluts) out of the way, as well as a couple of other serious issues (stopping minorities from voting, kicking out Hispanics, reinforcing the Police State, bringing in a marriage protection Amendment, protecting Social Security, stripping Social Security’s Supplemental Security Income, and a balanced budget Amendment, going back to the Gold Standard, and fighting the Martian lizard people) and we can concentrate on government’s #1 job: Jobs. Via tax cuts and deregulation of favored industries, mostly, with some poor-baiting and bombing a third-world country or two, if time allows.

     

    * …with help from the apparently-Liberal Media who seized on the narrative that the Establishment was Taking Back the Party.

  • cptdoom

    Its going to be hard to convince someone that you sincerely believe that if you’re willing to give exceptions for anything other than a risk of death to the woman.

    Even if you accept an exception for the woman’s life, you’ve started down the slope to pro-choice. Although the Right loves to pretend the entire abortion debate is a simple moral issue – don’t kill babies – the reality is that abortion represents a classic moral dilemma – whose rights are most important, the rights of the woman who is pregnant or the fetus? Because those rights can be in conflict, particularly in an unwanted pregnancy, you have to decide which set of rights is more important. Saying the woman should have the right to save her own life means you’re explicitly putting the woman’s rights above the fetus’.

    Even if death is the only reason for an exception, you still have to draw a line as to how high the risk of death has to be for the exception to be triggered. Every pregnancy, no matter how wanted to planned, holds a measurable, if small, risk of death for the woman. The Catholic church in the 1800s actually held the mother’s rights were never superior to the fetus, so there were no allowances for abortion. Any other stance always involves some level of negotiation.

    Personally I’m pro-choice not only because I’m a man (and as a gay man will never face an unintended pregnancy in any personal way), but because I believe women should have the right not only to avoid death but also to control the health of her body, and pregnancy puts enormous strain on that body, even if it turns out to be a healthy one.

  • Anne Fenwick

    It horrifies me that they don’t include exceptions for a foetus with serious or essentially terminal conditions or when the mother’s life is at risk. Is that really the case, or does it just not get mentioned?

  • lofgren

    To paraphrase an old sexist joke, if you do that then we’ve already established you are pro-choice, we’re just negotiating the terms of the choice.

    And who gets to make it.

  • EnlightenmentLiberal
    Its going to be hard to convince someone that you sincerely believe that if you’re willing to give exceptions for anything other than a risk of death to the woman.

    Even if you accept an exception for the woman’s life, you’ve started down the slope to pro-choice.

    Disagreed. This is a question of a life vs a life, not “personal inconvenience vs a life” (their framing, not mine).

    Further, AFAIK, oftentimes if the pregnant woman dies, then the fetus dies too, so in many cases it’s 1 life vs 0 lifes. That makes them rather sane, comparatively speaking, unlike Ireland which is batshit crazy for outlawing abortions that would save the pregnant woman in cases where both would die without the abortion.

  • http://www.thelosersleague.com theschwa

    “…voters sent a clear message that they’re fed up with political gamesmanship…

    “This a message bill.”