The Indiana House has approved one of the most restrictive abortion laws in the nation, but not after a bizarre debate led by sponsor state Rep. Eric Turner (R). When Democratic legislators asked for an exception for rape and incest, Turner cried foul and warned that women would just fake rapes to get some of those free abortions. The Indiana House agreed and rejected the amendment.
State Rep. Gail Riecken (D) introduced an amendment to exempt “women who became pregnant due to rape or incest, or women for whom pregnancy threatens their life or could cause serious and irreversible physical harm.”
In the video below, Turner stepped forward to warn of legions of false rape victims clamoring for free abortions:
Turner then stepped to the podium and insisted that Riecken’s amendment would create a “giant loophole” for women. That loophole? Women “could simply say they’ve been raped”:
With all do respect to Rep. Riecken, I understand what she’s trying to do. But as you know that when the federal health care bill was going through Congress there was a lot of discussion whether this would allow for abortion coverage and of course we were all told it would not. And the bill, my house bill 1210, would prevent that for any insurance company to provide abortion coverage under federal health care bill. This [amendment] would open that window and I would ask you to oppose this amendment.
I just want you to think about this, in my view, giant loophole that could be created where someone who could — now i want to be careful, I don’t want to disparage in any way someone who has gone through the experience of a rape or incest — but someone who is desirous of an abortion could simply say that they’ve been raped or there’s incest.
The House voted down Riecken’s amendment 42 to 54. There appeared to be little consideration of the fact that it is a crime to falsely allege a crime.
Source: Think Progress and found first on Reddit.
78 thoughts on “GOP Indiana Rep Warns That Women Will Fake Rapes In Order To Get Free Abortions”
Thinking women everywhere thank you for that sensitive and insightful post and for the representation you have provided over the years.
I don’t need to defend Prof. Turley; he’s more than capable of doing that himself. But I feel compelled to respond to your comments.
My impression is that you may have had a personal experience that you have determined reflects some sort of universal truths regarding human behavior. The clincher is your statement that “our legal system does create incentives for women to lie about rape.” To the contrary, our legal system actually discourages women from even reporting rapes.
You further assert, citing no authority, that women make false allegations of rape “many times,” and frequently do so at the urging of lawyers. That is nonsense.
I have been practicing law for almost 39 years (I know, I know, but I have no competence for anything else). That means that I have been exposed to both the best and the worst in human beings. The truth is that most people do not lie, even when they are deeply hurt and angry about the actions of another. The truth is that it is very difficult for most people to share even embarrassing experiences with their lawyers, let alone the humiliating and degrading experience of sexual assault. That is why most cases of rape are never even reported.
Most cases of incest likewise are never disclosed. My own mother was raped repeatedly by her stepfather before she was even in her teens. She lived with that shame all of her life and was able to reveal her pain to my sisters after they had become adults. I did not even learn of it until my sisters told me following my mother’s death. I have come to understand my mother’s agony only because I have represented hundreds of abused and neglected children over the years, many of whom were also victims of sexual assault in their homes.
The point of Rep. Turner’s comments was that he does not wish for rape and incest victims to have access to abortions. Since he can offer no rational basis for his position, he created an absurd argument predicated on a problem that doesn’t exist. It was a disgusting display of ignorance, arrogance and condescension. You can buy into it if you wish, but don’t kid yourself about what you’ve purchased.
eniobob & rafflaw,
I fear women’s issues aren’t sensational enough for the MSM … it’s far more important to cover the latest blunders by Palin and the squeamish in Libya, or Bachmann and the Revolutionary Wars start in New Hampshire to what Lindsay Lohan wore to her latest court hearing and the new psycho-babble coming from Charlie Sheen.
The MSM are not interested in truth; the MSM are not interested in calling the liars of the GOP to the carpet for their lies; the MSM are not interested in journalistic integrity. The MSM is only interested in what will bring in the biggest bucks …
You are correct that we need main stream media to get on board and hold these radicals accountable for their crazy actions.
1, March 31, 2011 at 4:27 pm
This is what we are up against and this is why we fight.”
And the** MIKE** is a big part of that fight to.
CNN’s ratings soared in the first quarter of 2011, making it one of the biggest winners of the last three months of cable news ratings. While Fox News, as it always does, had the top 12 programs of the quarter, CNN’s ratings climbed to heights it has not seen in many, many months. Among the biggest beneficiaries of the ratings spike, which occurred during an unusually heavy period of breaking and international news: Anderson Cooper, who won the demo in his timeslot for the first time in over two years, and Piers Morgan, who drew nearly a million viewers.
“Bust a union; Bust a uterus; Vote Republican and get Busty!”
Lol – Now that’s a t-shirt I would wear with pride!!
I love it … Bust a union; Bust a uterus; Vote Republican and get Busty!
Why is it that government wants to give free shit to everyone?
Vagina and breasts would cause the holier-than-thou saints of the GOP to be positively apoplectic:
Florida GOP commandment: Thou shalt not say “uterus”
A Democrat connects a woman’s womb to the Republican attack on unions, and gets admonished: No body parts, please!
By Andrew Leonard
I’ve been waiting in vain for a long time for the moment when reproductive female sex organs got mixed up with the national Republican assault on unions, but thanks to the reliable insanity of Florida, finally we have a story that has it all — with a dash of the GOP’s deregulatory agenda on top, just for spice. (Thanks to a tweet from Sierra Magazine’s Paul Rauber, for the tip.)
Last week, the Florida House of Representatives passed a bill banning the automatic deduction of union dues from government paychecks. During debate on the issue, state representative Scott Randolph, D-Orlando, used his floor time, reported the St. Petersberg Times, to make a point about how Republicans “are against regulations — except when it comes to the little guys, or serves their specific interests.”
At one point Randolph suggested that his wife “incorporate her uterus” to stop Republicans from pushing measures that would restrict abortions. Republicans, after all, wouldn’t want to further regulate a Florida business.
Apparently the GOP leadership of the House didn’t like the one-liner.
They told Democrats that Randolph is not to discuss body parts on the House floor.
“The point was that Republicans are always talking about deregulation and big government,” Randolph said Thursday. “And I always say their philosophy is small government for the big guy and big government for the little guy. And so, if my wife’s uterus was incorporated or my friend’s bedroom was incorporated, maybe they (Republicans) would be talking about deregulating.
A spokeswoman for the House GOP later explained “that members of both parties needed to be mindful of decorum during debate” and that “language that would be considered inappropriate for children and other guests” should be avoided.
I’m not sure what is really scarier to the Florida GOP, the mention of the word uterus or the public invocation of the concept of “regulation.” But Scott Randolph is my new hero — in one stroke he managed to not only tie together the entire social agenda of today’s GOP — crush unions, restrict abortions, and allow corporations to do as they please — but to also reveal the hysterical prudery of the folks currently in charge in Florida. A woman’s womb is a scary thing, indeed.
Meanwhile, can someone get to work on my next T-shirt: “Get the government out of my uterus, and into Goldman Sachs”?
Andrew Leonard is a staff writer at Salon. On Twitter, @koxinga21. More: Andrew Leonard
Up here in Ohio any woman who states she is going to vote republican is referred to as belonging to the “Bimbos on Barstools” arm of the Republican Party. Their only real movement is spinning.
Blouise and Elaine,
I agree with both of you. Turner is trying to turn the clock back to a bad time.
This is what we are up against and this is why we fight.
We will not give up, we will not back down, and we will continue to stand together, always watching and at the ready.
“I’d like to thank Rep. Turner for reminding all of us what it used to be like back when his attitude that ‘all women are stupid, lying whores’ was common.”
And those who weren’t thought of as lying whores were looked upon as grown up girls who knew their place in a man’s world–and who knew how to hold their tongues.
Seams, it is easy for Turner to be “right” when he is writing the laws to force women into these kind of Sophies Choices.
It is at least cruel, but unfortunately not too unusual these days!
I hate to say it but this ass-hat Eric Turner might be atleast partially correct. I don’t know about an avalanche of false rape complaints, but I can certainly see an indigent woman, with no healthcare option (and no bus fair to Illinois), or a pregnant teenager who’s terrified of her parents and can’t invision trying to put an abortion on the family health insurance doing what they feel is necessary to get an abortion.
What I can not gather from the article is whether the health care providers would be put in the position of “mandatory reporters” under the proposed amendment. If they are not, I could certainly see a sympathetic docter telling an indigent woman how to phrase something to get the proceedure.
I think one has to assume that any docters who are performing abortions are pro choice to begin with. I don’t think it’s too far fetched to imagine a docter saying to a poor woman who wants/needs an abortion, “Your going to have to check box “A” and then we can get started”
It really all depends on what if any duty the amendment placed upon the docters and the women to report the allegd rape.
I have represented numerous men charged with domestic violence, where there wives and girlfriends have come to my office and told me that thier boyfriend/husband never hit them but the officer told them at the time they had to say that to get there drunken spouse out of the house for 48 hours. Now some women recant genuine complaints of abuse because of unhealthy co-dependant relationships. I’ve seen alot of those too. But I’m talking about women who were being yelled at, were probably genuining afraid ( or atleast genuinely pissed off). And they were told they had to lie to get Bubba out of the house for a couple of days. I don’t think the cops who advise this or the women that make the false police reports are evil. It’s just an officer and a frightened/piss-off spouse trying to get around the limits of the law to deal with a bad situation.
So I think Turner may be in some way correct. And he’s an ass h**e.
Well said. Politicians like this want to move us back to the 18th century when women were chattel.
It is utterly disgusting what the GOP is putting women through. As if finding out that there’s something wrong with the pregnancy isn’t heart-wrenching enough, forcing a woman to carry the pregnancy to term is just the lowest of lows.
It is despicable, callous and, in my mind, amounts to psychological torture.
I grew up in a progressive neighborhood/area of Chicago in the 70s and 80s. While in hindsight, I probably saw some of the negatives of Feminism, for the most part it was an important component of the broader Civil Rights movement that has made my life, and America, much, much better. Most of us are lucky enough today to live in a world where the worst, craziest stereotypes of women are absent, or at least concealed.
I’d like to thank Rep. Turner for reminding all of us what it used to be like back when his attitude that “all women are stupid, lying whores” was common. I feel sorry for the women who have to deal with men like that today, but at least it is abnormal and rightly scorned, as opposed to normative.
Somewhere in Indiana there’s the underside of a rock that misses him and his appalling hate. He should crawl back under it.
If only Rep. Smith would just stay in Kenya, this country would be a better place.
Those are horrible stories that are still hard to believe. Those religious freaks or the religious freaks that these politicians are catering too need to be reminded that conservative doesn’t mean meddling in women’s and couple’s private medical business. This kind of crap legislation just makes a joke out of HIPAA privacy.
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