Republicans are obsessed with rape.
Republicans are obsessed with rape. It is perhaps the one issue that caused the GOP to implode during the 2012 Election. The foot-in-mouth disease carried by the party has revealed much about the current beliefs of conservatives and it has spread like a plague in just the last year or two, and as Republicans have continued to attack rape victims, they have united women like never before against their extreme anti-abortion agenda.
In just the last six months alone, Republicans have forced draconian anti-abortion legislation into law in Kansas, Texas, Ohio, Wisconsin, North Dakota, and Arkansas even after they acknowledged that they needed to do more to attract women voters. Well, apparently Republicans don’t care about what women think because they have done nothing but double down on the war on women they have been viciously waging since 2010, when Tea Party Republicans took control of state legislatures and governorships in states across the nation. Today’s Republican is required to oppose abortion exceptions for rape victims in order to avoid a primary challenge from someone further to the right. And because of that, Republicans have been saying some really stupid things about rape and rape victims. Here is a comprehensive list of 40 quotes uttered by Republicans about rape that women should keep in mind the next time they go into the voting booth in 2014.
When the next election rolls around, let’s not forget these 40 egregious rape quotes from the GOP.
1. “Rape is terrible. Rape is awful. Is it made any better by killing an innocent child? Does it solve the problem for the woman that’s been raped? We need to protect innocent life. Period.”
-Kansas Governor Sam Brownback, declaring that raped women must be additionally forced to carry and give birth to their rapist’s baby against their will in front of an all male crowd at the National Catholic Men’s Conference, June 2007.
2. “Nobody plans to have an accident in a car accident, nobody plans to have their homes flooded. You have to buy extra insurance for those two.”
-Barbara Listing, leader of Right To Life, comparing rape to a car accident, May 2013.
3. “In the emergency room they have what’s called rape kits where a woman can get cleaned out.”
-Texas State Senator Jodie Laubenberg, absurdly claiming that rape kits are used to abort a pregnancy, June 2013.
4. “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.”
-New Mexico State Rep. Cathrynn Brown, HB 206 language stating that rape victims would be charged and arrested for getting an abortion, January 2013.
5. “Granted, the percentage of pregnancies due to rape is small because it’s an act of violence, because the body is traumatized. I don’t know what percentage of pregnancies are due to the violence of rape. Because of the trauma the body goes through, I don’t know what percentage of pregnancy results from the act.”
-California GOP assembly President Celeste Greig, saying rape victims don’t get pregnant because it’s a traumatic act, March 2013.
6. “Well, you can make the argument that if she doesn’t have this baby, if she kills her child, that that, too, could ruin her life. And this is not an easy choice. I understand that. As horrible as the way that that son or daughter and son was created, it still is her child. And whether she has that child or doesn’t, it will always be her child. And she will always know that. And so to embrace her and to love her and to support her and get her through this very difficult time, I’ve always, you know, I believe and I think the right approach is to accept this horribly created — in the sense of rape — but nevertheless a gift in a very broken way, the gift of human life, and accept what God has given to you. As you know, we have to, in lots of different aspects of our life. We have horrible things happen. I can’t think of anything more horrible. But, nevertheless, we have to make the best out of a bad situation.”
-Rick Santorum, stating that God sanctions rape to give women the “gift” of pregnancy, January 2012.
7. “I’ve struggled with it myself for a long time, but I came to realize that life is that gift from God. And even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen.”
-Indiana Senate candidate Richard Mourdock, repeating Rick Santorum’s belief that rape is sanctioned by God, October 2012.
8. “It seems to be, first of all, from what I understand from doctors, it’s really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut the whole thing down.”
-Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin, claiming that women can shut down the reproductive process during rape to prevent pregnancy, August 2012.
9. “Before, when my friends on the left side of the aisle here tried to make rape and incest the subject — because, you know, the incidence of rape resulting in pregnancy are very low. But when you make that exception, there’s usually a requirement to report the rape within 48 hours. And in this case that’s impossible because this is in the sixth month of gestation. And that’s what completely negates and vitiates the purpose for such an amendment.”
-Arizona Rep. Trent Franks, claiming that getting pregnant via rape is rare therefore there shouldn’t be any exceptions for rape victims in anti-abortion bills, June 2013.
10. “Well I just haven’t heard of that being a circumstance that’s been brought to me in any personal way and I’d be open to hearing discussion about that subject matter. Generally speaking it’s this: that there millions of abortions in this country every year. Millions of them are paid for at least in part by taxpayers. I think it’s immoral for us to compel conscientious objecting taxpayers to fund abortion through the federal government, or any other government for that matter. So that’s my stand. And if there are exceptions there, then bring me those exceptions let’s talk about it. In the meantime it’s wrong for us to compel pro-life people to pay taxes to fund abortion.”
-Iowa Rep. Steve King, saying he’s never heard of a child becoming pregnant by rape and that he won’t support abortion under any circumstance until proof of such a thing is presented to him, August 2012.
11. “What Todd Akin is talking about is when you’ve got a real, genuine rape. A case of forcible rape, a case of assault, where a woman has been violated against her will through the use of physical force where it is physically traumatic for her, under those circumstances, the woman’s body — because of the trauma that has been inflicted on her — it may interfere with the normal function processes of her body that lead to conception and pregnancy.”
-AFA’s Bryan Fischer, agreeing with Todd Akin’s “legitimate rape” comment, August 2012.
12. “Ethel Waters, for example, was the result of a forcible rape. I used to work for James Robison back in the 1970s, he leads a large Christian organization. He, himself, was the result of a forcible rape. And so I know it happens, and yet even from those horrible, horrible tragedies of rape, which are inexcusable and indefensible, life has come and sometimes, you know, those people are able to do extraordinary things.”
-Mike Huckabee, defending Todd Akin’s rape comments and zero exceptions for rape victims by talking about how much of a positive gift rape is, August 2012.
13. “Abortion is never an option. At that point, if God has chosen to bless this person with a life, you don’t kill it.”
-Missouri Republican central committee member Sharon Barnes, echoing Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock that rape is God’s way of blessing women with children, August 2012.
14. “I’m very proud of my pro-life record, and I’ve always adopted the idea that, the position that the method of conception doesn’t change the definition of life.”
-Paul Ryan, referring to rape as a method of conception after being asked about Todd Akin’s rape comment, August 2012.
15. “He also told me one thing, ‘If you do (have premarital sex), just remember, consensual sex can turn into rape in an awful hurry. Because all of a sudden a young lady gets pregnant and the parents are madder than a wet hen and she’s not going to say, ‘Oh, yeah, I was part of the program.’ All that she has to say or the parents have to say is it was rape because she’s underage. And he just said, ‘Remember, Roger, if you go down that road, some girls,’ he said, ‘they rape so easy.’ What the whole genesis of it was, it was advice to me, telling me, ‘If you’re going to go down that road, you may have consensual sex that night and then the next morning it may be rape.’ So the way he said it was, ‘Just remember, Roger, some girls, they rape so easy. It may be rape the next morning.’
-Wisconsin State Rep. Roger Rivard, claiming that some girls are just easy to rape, October 2012.
16. “I lived something similar to that with my own family. She chose life, and I commend her for that. She knew my views. But, fortunately for me, I didn’t have to.. she chose they way I thought. No don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t rape… Uh, having a baby out of wedlock… put yourself in a father’s situation, yes. It is similar. But, back to the original, I’m pro-life, period.”
-Pennsylvania Rep. Tom Smith, comparing rape pregnancy to getting pregnant out of wedlock, August 2012.
17. “A life is a life, and it needs protected. Who’s going to protect it? We have to. I mean that’s, I believe life begins at conception. I’m not going to argue about the method of conception. It’s a life, and I’m pro-life. It’s that simple.”
-Pennsylvania Rep. Tom Smith, saying that rape is just another method of conception, August 2012.
18. “You know, I’m a Christian and I believe that God has a plan and a purpose for each one of our lives and that he can intercede in all kinds of situations and we need to have a little faith in many things.”
-Nevada Senate candidate Sharon Angle, claiming that God plans rapes, June 2010.
19. “I think that two wrongs don’t make a right. And I have been in the situation of counseling young girls, not 13 but 15, who have had very at-risk, difficult pregnancies. And my counsel was to look for some alternatives, which they did. And they found that they had made what was really a lemon situation into lemonade.”
-Sharon Angle, saying that a 13 year old who gets pregnant by her father should get over it and have the baby, July 2010.
20. “I’ve delivered lots of babies, and I know about these things. It is true. We tell infertile couples all the time that are having trouble conceiving because of the woman not ovulating, ‘Just relax. Drink a glass of wine. And don’t be so tense and uptight because all that adrenaline can cause you not to ovulate.’ So he was partially right wasn’t he? But the fact that a woman may have already ovulated 12 hours before she is raped, you’re not going to prevent a pregnancy there by a woman’s body shutting anything down because the horse has already left the barn, so to speak.”
-Georgia Rep. Phil Gingrey, claiming that Todd Akin’s rape comments were “partly right,” January 2013.
21. “If you listen to what Mourdock actually said, he said what virtually every catholic and every fundamentalist in the country believes, life begins at conception… and he also immediately issued a clarification saying that he was referring to the act of conception and he condemned rape. Romney has condemned rape. One part of this is nonsense. Every candidate I know, every decent american i know condemns rape. Okay so, why can’t people like Stephanie Cutter get over it?”
-Newt Gingrich, defending Richard Mourdock’s rape comment by telling women to get over it, October 2012.
22. “There are very few pregnancies as a result of rape, fortunately, and incest — compared to the usual abortion, what is the percentage of abortions for rape? It is tiny. It is a tiny, tiny percentage… Most abortions, most abortions are for what purpose? They just don’t want to have a baby!”
-Maryland congressman Roscoe Bartlett, falsely claiming that rape pregnancy is rare, September 2012.
23. “Each of these lines attempts to serve a portion of our population for which we extend our sympathy and encouragement. But nevertheless, it is only a small portion of South Carolina’s chronically ill or abused. Overall, these special add-on lines distract from the agency’s broader mission of protecting South Carolina’s public health.”
-South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, referring to raped and battered women as ‘distractions’ after vetoing funding to prevent rape and abuse, July 2012.
24. “Rape and incest was used as a reason to oppose this. I would hope that when a woman goes in to a physician with a rape issue, that physician will indeed ask her about perhaps her marriage, was this pregnancy caused by normal relations in a marriage or was it truly caused by a rape. I assume that’s part of the counseling that goes on.”
-Idaho State Rep. Chuck Winder, saying women don’t even know what rape is, August 2012.
25. “We do need to plan ahead, don’t we, in life? I have spare tire on my car. I also have life insurance. I have a lot of things that I plan ahead for.”
-Kansas State Rep. Pete De Graaf, saying that women should plan ahead to be raped, August 2011.
26. “If I thought that the man’s signature was required… required, in order for a woman to have an abortion, I’d have a little more peace about it…”
-Alaska State Rep. Alan Dick, suggesting that all women, including rape victims, should have to get permission from men to get an abortion, March 2012.
27. “If it’s an honest rape, that individual should go immediately to the emergency room, and I would give them a shot of estrogen.”
-Ron Paul, echoing Todd Akin’s “legitimate rape” comment 7 months before Akin actually said it, February 2012.
28. “A jury could very well conclude that this is a case of buyer’s remorse.”
-Former Colorado Senate Candidate Ken Buck, claiming that the victim may not have really been raped even though the perpetrator admitted that he committed the crime, March 2006.
29. “Through our conversations, I’ve heard, ‘what if somebody has a sincerely held religious conviction about dispensing the emergency contraception medication? What about their rights? How do we address those… It’s not about the victim.”
-Scott Brown, putting religious belief above the needs of rape victims, 2005.
30. “When you enter into a marriage, you enter into a contract for all sorts of different things with your spouse. Why should we take it to a Class 2 felony and put a husband away who’s been a good husband for however many years … based off of something that was OK in a marriage up until that point?”
-Arizona State Rep. Warde Nichols, equating spousal rape to consensual sex, March 2005.
31. “The facts show that people who are raped — who are truly raped — the juices don’t flow, the body functions don’t work and they don’t get pregnant.”
-North Carolina Rep. Henry Aldridge, making the Todd Akin “legitimate rape” claim over a decade earlier, April 1995.
32. “Rape is kinda like the weather. If it’s inevitable, just relax and enjoy it.”
-Texas Gubernatorial candidate Clayton Williams, March 1990.
33. “The odds are one in millions and millions and millions. And there is a physical reason for that. Rape, obviously, is a traumatic experience. When that traumatic experience is undergone, a woman secretes a certain secretion, which has a tendency to kill sperm.”
-Pennsylvania State Rep. Stephen Freind, ignoring medical science, March 1988.
34. “Fear-induced hormonal changes could block a rape victim’s ability to conceive.”
-Arkansas Republican Fay Boozman, making the Todd Akin claim, he also allegedly called this “block” “God’s little shield,” 1998.
35. “Sometimes we’re actually right when we go with our gut and stand on principle in supporting underdog candidates.”
-Sarah Palin, responding to Todd Akin’s rape quote, August 2012.
36. “Now Moore, Jennifer Moore, 18, on her way to college. She was 5-foot-2, 105 pounds, wearing a miniskirt and a halter top with a bare midriff. Now, again, there you go. So every predator in the world is gonna pick that up at two in the morning. She’s walking by herself on the West Side Highway, and she gets picked up by a thug. All right. Now she’s out of her mind, drunk.”
-Bill O’ Reilly, claiming that a murdered rape victim was asking to be raped because of the way she dressed, August 2006.
37. “I think that when you get married you have consented to sex. That’s what marriage is all about, I don’t know if maybe these girls missed sex ed.”
-Eagle Forum President Phyllis Schlafly, saying that men can force their wives to have sex against their will, March 2007.
38. “Concern for rape victims is a red herring because conceptions from rape occur with approximately the same frequency as snowfall in Miami.”
-Judge James Leon Holmes, Bush appointee, in a 1980 letter.
39. “Richard and I, along with millions of Americans – including even Joe Donnelly – believe that life is a gift from God. To try and construe his words as anything other than a restatement of that belief is irresponsible and ridiculous.”
-John Cornyn, standing by Richard Mourdock’s rape comments, October 2012.
40. “The young folks that are coming into each of your services are anywhere from 17 to 22 or 23. Gee whiz, the hormone level created by nature sets in place the possibility for these types of things to occur. So we’ve got to be very careful how we address it on our side.”
-Georgia Senator Saxby Chambliss, blaming the outrageous number of rapes in the military on hormones, June 2013.
… and click here for the worst Republican rape quote of all.
It’s time to take America back from these Republican rape nuts.
As anyone can see, conservatives have been saying stupid things about rape since at least the 1980s. But up until recent years, the extreme Republican stance on rape had remained on the fringe of the party. Today, Republicans proudly wear their extreme views on rape in the open for all to see. It doesn’t compute with them that the vast majority of women reject those views, and that medical science and rape statistics completely refutes them. That’s why it is so important to make sure people across the nation know all about what Republicans have said about rape and rape victims, and what they have done as a result. The most important election in our lifetimes will be in 2014 and we cannot afford to sit out like many did in 2010. There is a reason why Republicans gained the power to push their crazy anti-women agenda. It’s because voters failed to show up, thus handing victory to a party that doesn’t deserve it. Americans must do better in 2014.
We must take back state legislatures, governorships, and the House of Representatives away from the GOP. It is the only way to preserve the rights and freedoms that women have fought so long for. That includes the right to choose whether or not to end an unwanted pregnancy. Republicans have no right to make reproductive health decisions for women, especially since the great majority of those in the GOP making such laws to do so are men. That being said, women should resoundingly say ‘no’ to Republicans in 2014 and beyond until the GOP war on women is not only ended, but reversed. If Republicans ever want to hold public office again, they will abandon their anti-women agenda and their vile rhetoric. Until then, women will always remember in November.