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 Post subject: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:49 am 
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New Mexico Republican proposes law that would make it illegal for a woman to abort a pregnancy that resulted from rape while legal procedings were ongoing, as that would amount to "tampering with evidence."

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 6:48 am 
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There's an update! Apparently, she didn't mean the parts that made everyone hate her...

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House Bill 206 was never intended to punish or criminalize rape victims ... Its intent is solely to deter rape and cases of incest. The rapist—not the victim—would be charged with tampering of evidence. I am submitting a substitute draft to make the intent of the legislation abundantly clear.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 8:29 am 
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I'm confused. Is she saying that if a rape victim gets an abortion, the rapist will get an extra charge of "tampering with evidence". And is this extra charge because she thinks the rapist has to (or should have to) give consent for the abortion to take place?

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 9:32 am 
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Now I really don't get it.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:03 am 
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and if you don't get pregnant from a rape, does that mean you're just making it up?

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 11:48 am 
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I think it's back pedaling. Now she says it's aimed at rapists who try to force a victim into getting an abortion. I think the original bill is exactly what she meant.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:07 pm 
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This article was linked in the comments section of another article on this bill: http://www.businessinsider.com/catholic ... ple-2013-1

Cliffs: Catholic Hospital being sued for malpractice says fetus isn't a person until it's born so they aren't liable.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:20 pm 
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It seems like a good way to discourage women from pursuing rape charges... if you want that.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:21 pm 
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I'm actually a little bit confused, since the original wording of the bill made it pretty clear to me that it was about criminalizing "abortion with the intent to cover up evidence" of a crime. There are plenty of laws that make X illegal if your intent is Y, but if your intent is Z then the thing is not illegal. This law would not make abortion after a rape just because you want to get an abortion illegal and the clarification did not seem like backpedaling at all because the original bill said as much. It does actually happen that incest victims are coerced into abortion because their abuser is trying to cover up their rapes, so this seems like a useful add-on to any prosecution of that kind of crime. I think much would be fixed if they just made it clear that the law is intended to prosecute abusers and any doctor who would collaborate with them to cover up evidence and that victims couldn't be charged under this law. Women's health groups are already working to get women's health practitioners to screen women for sexual and domestic violence at every appointment. It seems clear that doctors should be entrusted to both save or document physical evidence if they suspect rape or violence (save products of conception in an abortion, document bruises and cuts in a chart) and that the state should be able to rely on that evidence to prosecute rapists and abusers.


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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:23 pm 
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EmperorTomatoKetchup wrote:
and if you don't get pregnant from a rape, does that mean you're just making it up?


This is not a logical conclusion. A lack of physical evidence is just a lack of physical evidence. Most rape cases either lack physical evidence to begin with or the physical evidence is destroyed when the woman (understandably) bathes or washes her clothes. This is why it's so important to put the onus on the first care provider to collect whatever evidence can be collected. I think that logically should include products of conception.


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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:25 pm 
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Ariann wrote:
I'm actually a little bit confused, since the original wording of the bill made it pretty clear to me that it was about criminalizing "abortion with the intent to cover up evidence" of a crime. There are plenty of laws that make X illegal if your intent is Y, but if your intent is Z then the thing is not illegal. This law would not make abortion after a rape just because you want to get an abortion illegal and the clarification did not seem like backpedaling at all because the original bill said as much. It does actually happen that incest victims are coerced into abortion because their abuser is trying to cover up their rapes, so this seems like a useful add-on to any prosecution of that kind of crime. I think much would be fixed if they just made it clear that the law is intended to prosecute abusers and any doctor who would collaborate with them to cover up evidence and that victims couldn't be charged under this law. Women's health groups are already working to get women's health practitioners to screen women for sexual and domestic violence at every appointment. It seems clear that doctors should be entrusted to both save or document physical evidence if they suspect rape or violence (save products of conception in an abortion, document bruises and cuts in a chart) and that the state should be able to rely on that evidence to prosecute rapists and abusers.


After reading a few other articles I would not be surprised if that was her intent. She mentioned several times that her goal was to better protect children from abuse and to curb incest. Either it is a despicable attempt to punish victims, or it is an example of a complete lack of attention to detail by a state legislature representatives (it was cosponsored by 9 other Republicans). Both options are discouraging, one is a little less offensive.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:29 pm 
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alden wrote:
I'm confused. Is she saying that if a rape victim gets an abortion, the rapist will get an extra charge of "tampering with evidence". And is this extra charge because she thinks the rapist has to (or should have to) give consent for the abortion to take place?


What? No, she's saying if someone coerces someone else into getting an abortion with the intent to destroy evidence of the crime, then it should be an additional crime (beyond the rape). (the original language is unfortunately unclear that this should not be used to prosecute victims, who also might have reasons to avoid prosecuting the case and therefore have an intent to destroy evidence - although honestly victims of other crimes are sometimes charged with destroying evidence) She's not saying a rapist would have to consent to a woman choosing to get an abortion after a rape - where are you getting that?

I don't think this is a problem so much with adult rape cases involving non-relatives (although it certainly could be, in the same way that reproductive coercion is an occasional hallmark of domestic violence), but it is a frequent tactic for men committing incest with younger girls because a pregnancy is an obvious sign that something is going on that shouldn't be.


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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 1:56 pm 
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Isn't destroying evidence a crime already?

I think this has to be looked at in the larger picture of the successful battle the right has waged against abortion rights by chipping away at the edges. They can't get Roe overturned but they can make it damn near impossible for someone to get an abortion.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:05 pm 
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The hilarious thing is that the new draft of the bill specifically exempts "the mother" from prosecution under the language of the bill. Meaning that if a woman rapes a man or boy, gets pregnant, has an abortion with the intent to destroy evidence of the rape, she would be protected by the bill from the bill.

I guess these things happen when you're just completely full of shiitake.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:15 pm 
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If only there were some way to confirm and document a pregnancy without waiting around for 9 months to see what happens.

The destroying-evidence angle seems so silly to me. It's like saying if someone sets your house on fire, you can't put it out because you'd be destroying evidence of arson. Hey, I know! We could take photos and have investigators document what they found at the scene of my house fire! No? Not good enough? Okay, well, you better get a jury over here quick. It's only smoldering now.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 4:36 pm 
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I totally see that it is imperfect, but I do want to throw out there that reproductive coercion (both toward abortion and toward birth) are commonplace in cases of domestic violence (and in fact pregnancy is generally the most dangerous time to be in a relationship with an abuser - abuse usually increases during pregnancy) and incest and I am happy to see almost any legislation that increases penalties for the additional injuries of those cases. The fact that a bill isn't perfect is not the same as it being evil. And again, this bill does not actual penalize wanted abortion in any way, even in its original language. I could absolutely see the same bill being introduced by pro-choice advocates (perhaps with slightly better wording).


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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 4:39 pm 
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alden wrote:

After reading a few other articles I would not be surprised if that was her intent. She mentioned several times that her goal was to better protect children from abuse and to curb incest. Either it is a despicable attempt to punish victims, or it is an example of a complete lack of attention to detail by a state legislature representatives (it was cosponsored by 9 other Republicans). Both options are discouraging, one is a little less offensive.


The latter might be a "complete lack of attention to detail," but if you've ever read any laws, you would know that is not only common, but ubiquitous. I don't think you get an extra demerit for writing badly in an obnoxious case when it's a hallmark of your profession to write badly.


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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 4:46 pm 
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I think the problem here is that, given the current climate, it's so hard to give the befit of the doubt for good intentions.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 4:53 pm 
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Yes, I understand that - it is definitely hard not to just out of hand hate on everything Republicans do these days. If this had been a bi-partisan bill or a Democrat-sponsored bill, there would probably be zero uproar about it and possibly lots of congratulations for being tough on rapists.


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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 5:25 pm 
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Not so much the republican, but also the sponsor is well endorsed by pro-life groups, and that combined with ANY abortion legislation has to raise concerns about ulterior motives. Sad, but they've done it to themselves.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 6:36 pm 
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My reading is that the original language does penalize wanted abortion. I don't know how we can say that someone who acts in a way that does destroy evidence, who knows that it will destroy evidence, does not intend to destroy that evidence.

It has no chance of passing, which is a reason to be annoyed if you're in favor of laws against coercive abortion, since there's no chance that any such law will come out of this now.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 7:11 pm 
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Does this mean that someone who worked with the victim to recover and aided the victim in working through the decision to obtain an abortion could be prosecuted? The law would also criminalize persuading someone to get an abortion after an assault, by the way.

Again, I fail to see how this is not covered by existing evidence tampering laws if it's about coercion instead of abortion.
But it's really about legislating against abortion whenever possible.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 8:46 pm 
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I don't for an instant believe this was a good-faith effort to protect women.

For one thing, the presence of a fetus does not say one thing, any which way, about whether rape took place. It says a fetus was conceived, that's it.

For another, having an abortion doesn't ruin the evidence. You can take DNA from a terminated fetus, so any argument that it is necessary for a woman to carry an unwanted fetus to term in order to secure prosecution is specious at best.

For another, the bill states:
“Tampering with evidence shall include procuring or facilitating an abortion, or compelling or coercing another to obtain an abortion, of a fetus that is the result of criminal sexual penetration or incest with the intent to destroy evidence of the crime.”

Bolding mine. The brilliant thing about anti-choicers in the US is that they have consistently made abortion harder to get. This is yet another way they intend to intimidate providers out of providing them for fear of jail time.

The fact that this law is one that would rarely if ever be invoked doesn't matter. It's part of a larger push to make every single abortion as hard as possible to get, to make every provider more and more nervous about violence or jail time, and to punish every single woman who dares have sex for her own reasons.

Do coerced abortions happen? Yes. Not often, but they do. Though not as a way to disappear evidence of rape because, again, a fetus just proves a fetus was conceived. Do coerced pregnancies happen? All the forking time, and the over-arching goal of anti-choicers is to make sure every woman sexually active woman is punished with a pregnancy.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 8:48 pm 
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Ariann wrote:
Yes, I understand that - it is definitely hard not to just out of hand hate on everything Republicans do these days. If this had been a bi-partisan bill or a Democrat-sponsored bill, there would probably be zero uproar about it and possibly lots of congratulations for being tough on rapists.

I disagree. I think that pro-choicers would be nervous about any bill that seeks to limit abortion no matter the source. As we should be.

We recently had a bill in Canada that sought to make the murder of a pregnant woman two crimes. We're protecting pregnant women and babies! Excellent!

In reality, you are opening the door to fetal personhood. And as Canada has no law on abortion, introducing any is a slope that is inherently dangerous.

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 Post subject: Re: Breaking News: Republicans don't care for women
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 9:01 pm 
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Also, because I think this is important, studies have consistently shown that termination of a fetus conceived through rape or incest make up less than 1.5% of abortions performed in the U.S. Source.

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