No rape exception in Republican platform’s constitutional abortion ban

By David Edwards
Tuesday, August 21, 2012 9:45 EDT
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Pro-choice protesters support abortion rights (Flickr/ Beechwood Photograph)
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The Republican Party is set to adopt an official platform that calls for “a human life amendment” to the Constitution that would not allow abortion even in cases of rape.

As Republicans were calling for Todd Akin to quit his senate bid after he told KTVI that women could not get pregnant from “legitimate” rape, CNN obtained draft language of the Republican platform that includes a constitutional abortion ban without any exceptions for rape, incest or life of the mother.

“Faithful to the ‘self-evident’ truths enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed,” the draft says. “We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children.”

The draft contains a “salute” to state “informed consent” laws that force women to have an ultrasound before having an abortion. Support for “mandatory waiting periods prior to an abortion, and health-protective clinic regulation” is also included.

Similar official platforms were adopted by Republicans in 2000, 2004 and 2008. Then-Republican presidential nominee John McCain tried unsuccessfully in 2008 to include an exception to allow abortions in cases where the mother’s life was at risk.

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins had warned that including any exceptions in the proposed constitutional ban on abortion would be “political suicide.”

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney has said that abortions should be legal in certain cases.

“I am pro-life and believe that abortion should be limited to only instances of rape, incest, or to save the life of the mother,” Romney wrote in 2011. “If I have the opportunity to serve as our nation’s next president, I commit to doing everything in my power to cultivate, promote, and support a culture of life in America.”

As the presidential nominee, the former Massachusetts governor will officially be the leader of the Republican Party — but it is unlikely he will stop Republicans from including extreme anti-abortion language in the party platform.

(h/t: The Huffington Post)

David Edwards
David Edwards
David Edwards has served as an editor at Raw Story since 2006. His work can also be found at Crooks & Liars, and he's also been published at The BRAD BLOG. He came to Raw Story after working as a network manager for the state of North Carolina and as as engineer developing enterprise resource planning software. Follow him on Twitter at @DavidEdwards.
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