Yet another one for the WTF files.

In an attempt to cater to their ultra-conservative, anti-abortion base, Republicans in the House of Representatives introduced the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act” which aims to limit federal funding for abortions solely to women who have been “forcibly raped.” That means if a woman becomes pregnant due to a date rape, is a victim of statutory rape, or is raped when mentally incapacitated (or intoxicated), too bad…they’d no longer be able to obtain an abortion while on Medicaid, Medicare, or any other government funded health care plan.

Although taxpayer funds cannot, by law, go toward funding abortions, for years certain situations such as rape, incest, and a threat to mother’s life has been exempt from the law. However, According to Nick Baumann of Mother Jones, the new initiative by House Republicans would drastically limit the scope of what is considered rape.

“With this legislation, which was introduced last week by Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.), Republicans propose that the rape exemption be limited to “forcible rape.” This would rule out federal assistance for abortions in many rape cases, including instances of statutory rape, many of which are non-forcible. For example: If a 13-year-old girl is impregnated by a 24-year-old adult, she would no longer qualify to have Medicaid pay for an abortion.”

Rightfully, women’s groups are up in arms about the proposed legislation. Many worry that changing the funding exemption of rape to “forcible rape” is a slippery slope, especially considering “forcible rape” is an ambiguous term and has not been legally defined.

“This bill takes us back to a time when just saying ‘no’ wasn’t enough to qualify as rape,” said Steph Sterling, a lawyer and senior adviser to the National Women’s Law Center.

I also wonder how this change, if passed, would disproportionally affect poor women, many of which are minorities and are more likely to need Medicaid and Medicare to cover their healthcare needs.

Thankfully, pro-choice Democrats still hold an advantage in the Senate, which means the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act” will most likely stall in the House. Still, many pro-life conservatives (both Democrats and Republicans) seem hell bent on restricting a woman’s right to choose, even when they need it most.

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  • ash

    let them try to stop abortions you know what peopel will do? start doing themselves —the homemade ways and by that i mean hangers, throwing themselves down stairs and drinking bleach and thats who they want running this country? get the f*k out of here

  • Girl

    I am a rape victim myself and I found this to be disturbing. Thank God I didn’t get pregnant ( I was a child myself when it happened). What I don’t get is why people treat rape as if the sh!t isn’t serious. Do you know I still have nightmares and panic attacks when I think about it. I may not even be able to have babies if I chose to do so because I am so afraid it will happen again.It makes me cry that people are even doing this but people are protecting them after they do it. There is no such things as consensual rape because it wouln’t be called rape ; it would be called sex. No , abortion should be available to anyone who needs it because it is your right to your own body!!

    I honestly don’t believe in republicans anyway. Everything they do is backward and they do it for the downfall of the people , not the good of the people.

  • berrymoore

    Called my representative, Renee Ellmers, 2nd district of North Carolina, to ask if she was supporting this bill. First, the MAN who answered the phone said that he hadn’t heard of it. After putting me on hold, he came back on to say that yes, she was supporting it. I asked him if that meant that she was supporting redefining rape. He tiraded over that wasn’t true that it was just closing a loophole in the Hyde Amendment about consent. His words: ” there is a loophole that this closes where teenagers who give consent were able to get abortions paid for by the government.” I asked him if that meant Statutory Rape. He said yes. I asked him if he knew what statutory rape meant. He said yes. I asked him if he realized that the teenage years began at 13. He didn’t say anything. I went on to ask him if he thought that a man over the age of 21 who talked a girl of 13 into having sex with him was wrong. He said that she had given consent so it is not rape. That conversation gave me the chills

  • Birgit

    Just when I thought the Republicans couldn’t be any more hateful they come up with this.