Quantcast
Connect with us

Idaho Republican thinks ‘trauma’ prevents pregnancy in rape: ‘That may be true with incest a little bit’

Published

on

State Rep. Pete Nielson

Another Republican lawmaker suggested women and girls are unlikely to become pregnant from rape or incest.

Idaho state Rep. Pete Nielson (R-Mountain Home) spoke up during a hearing Thursday during a legislative hearing to decide whether abortion providers should be required to give patients a list of facilities that offer free ultrasounds, reported The Spokesman-Review.

ADVERTISEMENT

The measure makes no exceptions for victims of rape or incest, and a clinic manager testified that her center had treated two rape victims — one whom chose to keep her baby and the other who offered her child for adoption.

Nielson expressed his doubts that those pregnancies were medically possible.

“Now, I’m of the understanding that in many cases of rape it does not involve any pregnancy because of the trauma of the incident,” Nielson said. “That may be true with incest a little bit.”

Women’s health advocates attacked the lawmaker’s claims as “absolutely scientifically and medically inaccurate” — and said they also subjected rape victims to doubts about their accusations if they became pregnant as a result of the assault.

But Nielson stood by his claims — even as he admitted he wasn’t sure whether they were accurate.

ADVERTISEMENT

“That’s information that I’ve had through the years,” he said. “Whether it’s totally accurate or not, I don’t know. In a rape situation, there’s a lot of trauma.”

The lawmaker explained his own interest in the topic.

“I read a lot of information. I have read it several times,” Nielson said. “Being a father of five girls, I’ve explored this a lot.”

ADVERTISEMENT

The idea that rape is unlikely to result in pregnancy dates back to at least ancient Greece, and it was even written into law in medieval England.

It’s since been proven incorrect by science and medicine, but the notion persists in the minds of some anti-choice Republican legislators.

ADVERTISEMENT

Idaho state Rep. Vito Barbieri (R-Dalton Gardens), speaking last year before the same legislative committee, asked a physician during an abortion-related hearing whether it would be possible for a woman to swallow a camera to conduct a gynecological exam.

“It cannot be done in pregnancy simply because, when you swallow a pill, it would not end up in the vagina,” said Dr. Julie Madsen, prompting loud laughter from within the chamber.

Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO) doomed his U.S. Senate bid in 2012 when he suggested that victims of “legitimate rape” would not likely become pregnant because “the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Listen to audio of Nielson’s comments posted online by Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest:


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Moon may be richer in water than thought — and it could help propel humans farther from earth

Published

on

There may be far more water on the Moon than previously thought, according to two studies published Monday raising the tantalising prospect that astronauts on future space missions could find refreshment -- and maybe even fuel -- on the lunar surface.

The Moon was believed to be bone dry until around a decade ago when a series of findings suggested that our nearest celestial neighbour has traces of water trapped in the surface.

Two new studies published in Nature Astronomy on Monday suggest there could be much more water than previously thought, including ice stored in permanently shadowed "cold traps" at lunar polar regions.

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Asymptomatic coronaagvirus sufferers lose antibodies sooner: study

Published

on

Asymptomatic coronavirus sufferers appear to lose detectable antibodies sooner than people who have exhibited Covid-19 symptoms, according to one of the biggest studies of its kind in Britain published on Tuesday.

The findings by Imperial College London and market research firm Ipsos Mori also suggest the loss of antibodies was slower in 18–24 year-olds compared to those aged 75 and over.

Overall, samples from hundreds of thousands of people across England between mid-June and late September showed the prevalence of virus antibodies fell by more than a quarter.

The research, commissioned by the British government and published Tuesday by Imperial, indicates people's immune response to Covid-19 reduces over time following infection.

Continue Reading
 

2020 Election

Early voting to be hit by heavy rain and flooding as Hurricane Zeta barrels towards the Gulf Coast

Published

on

Hurricane Zeta is expected to make landfall near Louisiana's border with Mississippi on Wednesday evening as campaigns work to get supporters to the polls and convince any undecided voters to back their candidate.

"Hurricane conditions and life-threatening storm surge are possible along portions of the northern Gulf Coast on Wednesday, and Storm Surge and Hurricane Watches are in effect," the National Hurricane Center warned.

"Between Tuesday night and Thursday, heavy rainfall is expected from portions of the central Gulf Coast into the southern Appalachians and Mid-Atlantic states near and in advance of Zeta. This rainfall will lead to flash, urban, small stream, and minor river flooding," the center explained.

Continue Reading
 
 
Democracy is in peril. Invest in progressive news. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1. Go ad-free. LEARN MORE