Thursday, January 24, 2013

New Mexico Republican wants to criminalize rape abortions

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Representative Cathrynn N. Brown (Republican, New Mexico)
Rep. Cathrynn Brown (R-NM)

The only thing Republicans seem to love more than posturing about rape babies is using them as an excuse to strip away disenfranchised women’s right to bodily autonomy:

A Republican lawmaker in New Mexico introduced a bill on Wednesday that would legally require victims of rape to carry their pregnancies to term in order to use the fetus as evidence for a sexual assault trial.

House Bill 206, introduced by state Rep. Cathrynn Brown (R), would charge a rape victim who ended her pregnancy with a third-degree felony for "tampering with evidence."

“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," the bill says.

Third-degree felonies in New Mexico carry a sentence of up to three years in prison.

It’s also intended as yet another penalty against sex offenders:

Brown said in a statement Thursday that she introduced the bill with the goal of punishing the person who commits incest or rape and then procures or facilitates an abortion to destroy the evidence of the crime.

“New Mexico needs to strengthen its laws to deter sex offenders,” said Brown. “By adding this law in New Mexico, we can help to protect women across our state.”

Imagine the repercussions if it were made law that a legislator must first present compelling evidence that a certain offense is actually taking place in the real world (as opposed to within the confines of their fevered authoritarian mind) before they were allowed to present harsher restrictions on the rights of the supposed victims under the guise of “protecting” them.

Wouldn’t that be something?

(via @BuzzFeedAndrew)