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Thread: New Mexico Rep. wants to classify post-rape abortions as felonies for "tampering with evidence"

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    Banned Opty's Avatar
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    New Mexico Rep. wants to classify post-rape abortions as felonies for "tampering with evidence"

    And the nation rolls its collective eyes at yet another moronic Republican.

    SANTA FE, N.M. A Republican legislator came under fire for her proposed law that, critics said, could lead to felony charges against rape or incest victims seeking an abortion.

    On Wednesday Rep. Cathrynn Brown, R-Carlsbad, introduced House Bill 206, which she said was intended to make it a crime for a rapist to force his pregnant victim to have an abortion.

    Within hours the bill drew national attention for a section that reads:

    "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."

    That would appear to open up rape or incest victims to felony charges, punishable by up to three years in prison, if they obtain an abortion, reports CBS Affiliate KRQE.
    Jesus, there seriously is no end to the stupidity of some on the Right. Sane, intelligent Republicans in leadership positions are an endangered species.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-201_162-...uproar-in-n.m/

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    You can't sit with us! missesdash's Avatar
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    It's not like the fetus is an eye witness. What type of evidence can you take from a live fetus that can't be taken from an aborted one?

    What even.

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    Delerium ex Ennui Xelebes's Avatar
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    Likely wouldn't survive a court challenge.

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    Are you one, Herbert? Prozyan's Avatar
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    Honestly, it was a poorly written bill that didn't define what the intent of it was:

    ..."Brown's intent was to focus on a perpetrator, such as a stepfather who raped a teen, impregnated her and then demanded that she get an abortion."
    It is intended to punish those who coerce an abortion to cover up evidence of their crime, not punish the victim in any way. The bill is being rewritten.
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    fluently sarcastic grandma offender ladyleeona's Avatar
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    Our representatives, folks.

    It's seriously terrifying that this idiot is representing the thoughts and beliefs of a much-larger group. The crazies: they are many.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prozyan View Post
    Honestly, it was a poorly written bill that didn't define what the intent of it was:



    It is intended to punish those who coerce an abortion to cover up evidence of their crime, not punish the victim in any way. The bill is being rewritten.
    Ah, that would actually be pretty reasonable, as long as they can get the wording absolutely clear.
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  9. #9
    You can't sit with us! missesdash's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prozyan View Post
    Honestly, it was a poorly written bill that didn't define what the intent of it was:



    It is intended to punish those who coerce an abortion to cover up evidence of their crime, not punish the victim in any way. The bill is being rewritten.
    Either way, the idea that the fetus is "evidence" only if alive is still not based in reality. Isn't it already illegal to force an abortion? And if she's worried about forced abortions, why only include rape victims?

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    Banned Opty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prozyan View Post
    Honestly, it was a poorly written bill that didn't define what the intent of it was:

    It is intended to punish those who coerce an abortion to cover up evidence of their crime, not punish the victim in any way. The bill is being rewritten.
    I call "bullshit" on her excuse.

    She's a lawyer. In fact, she's a transactional lawyer, which is a profession that demands attention to detail and wording when drafting contracts. She is perfectly aware of how carefully and specifically laws and other legal documents are worded and why they need to be worded in such a way.

    She included the wording "procuring or facilitating an abortion" in the text of the law. Since "procure" means "obtain," when referring to a medical procedure, I'm not sure how it's physically possible to "obtain an abortion" for someone else.

    So, given her profession (lawyer), her wording in the original draft of the bill, and her history of strongly pushing for Voter ID laws in her state, I seriously doubt that this was a case of poor word choice; it seems more like the intentional continuation of a narrow-minded party-line agenda.

    She's simply pulling some CYA in the wake of the outrage she's created.
    Last edited by Opty; 01-26-2013 at 05:56 AM.

  11. #11
    Hmmm... I think I disagree. Captcha's Avatar
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    It should probably be illegal for victims of any sort of assault to get first aid, or to do anything to hasten the healing of their injuries. That's evidence, damn it, and it can't be tampered with just because they selfishly want to get on with their lives and end their pain.

  12. #12
    the philosophical pegasus Shadow Dragon's Avatar
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    This was already brought up in Women getting jailed for being pregnant and abortions, through I suppose it does warrant its own thread.

    Complete and utter self-righteousness on her part.The truly sad part is that if the majority of that state senate or the governor would have been Republicans, it'd have a shot of passing.
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    Joker Groupie Celia Cyanide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Opty View Post
    I call "bullshit" on her excuse.

    She's a lawyer. In fact, she's transactional lawyer, which is a profession that demands attention to detail and wording when drafting contracts. She is perfectly aware of how carefully and specifically laws and other legal documents are worded and why they need to be worded in such a way.

    She included the wording "procuring or facilitating an abortion" in the text of the law. Since "procure" means "obtain," when referring to a medical procedure, I'm not sure how it's physically possible to "obtain an abortion" for someone else.
    I read that too, and I agree, she had to have known that the bill does punish the victims, and the doctors.

    The fact is, there is so much support for abortion in the case of rape that people like this have to make things up. She's trying to convince people that we can't let rape victims have abortions, or we won't be able to catch rapists. It's bullshit.
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    Old revolutionary muravyets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by missesdash View Post
    Either way, the idea that the fetus is "evidence" only if alive is still not based in reality. Isn't it already illegal to force an abortion? And if she's worried about forced abortions, why only include rape victims?
    This. Also I agree with Opty's comments. This bill is equal parts stupid and cynical, and its author is doing her best to weasel out from under it.
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    Is me. Monkey's Avatar
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    If they wanted DNA proof, wouldn't aborting the fetus mean that proof was available even sooner? They'd just have to test the fetus, rather than waiting nine months and testing an infant, right?
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    Sophipygian AW Moderator Alessandra Kelley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Monkey View Post
    If they wanted DNA proof, wouldn't aborting the fetus mean that proof was available even sooner? They'd just have to test the fetus, rather than waiting nine months and testing an infant, right?
    Umm, I believe that DNA testing can be done on fetuses in the womb anyway. I'm a little fuzzy on it, and I think it may be slightly risky to the pregnancy, but it certainly can be done before birth. I'm pretty sure it's one way of checking for Down Syndrome.

    There are plenty of very good arguments against this legislation, but that is not one of them.

  17. #17
    Is me. Monkey's Avatar
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    Regardless of whether or not it could be done "sooner," they could still DNA test the fetus, amIright?
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    fluently sarcastic grandma offender ladyleeona's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Monkey View Post
    Regardless of whether or not it could be done "sooner," they could still DNA test the fetus, amIright?
    Definitely. Determining paternity (or maternity, if you're the conspiracy type) could be done on a fetus. I'm reallyyyyy not seeing why the bill-maker would want to drag out a rape victim's suffering...oh wait....?

    ...

    Nope.

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    Mildly Disturbing Filigree's Avatar
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    For those of you not from New Mexico, let me clarify. Cathrynn Brown is from Carlsbad, in the extreme southeastern corner of the state. Yes, where the gorgeous caverns are (inset gratuitous jokes about batshit here). And yes, Roswell is nearby (insert gratuitous jokes about End-Timers and Alien Conspiracies here). Alamogordo (yes, where they had the Harry Potter book-burning 'holy bonfire' in 2001) is not far away, and its Air Force ties also come with a generous helping of Evangelical Christian sanctimony and censorship.

    The area is geographically and politically more a part of West Texas than NM, and consistently votes along socially conservative lines. I am not surprised to see legislation like this coming out of the Carlsbad region.

    And for the record, the blowback has been so harsh that Brown is hastily 'revising' her bill.
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    practical experience, FTW Max Vaehling's Avatar
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    Wondering about the practicality. Are they planning to raise the kids in state-owned evidence lockers nurseries, then?

  21. #21
    All Living is Local Don's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Filigree View Post
    For those of you not from New Mexico, let me clarify. Cathrynn Brown is from Carlsbad, in the extreme southeastern corner of the state. Yes, where the gorgeous caverns are (inset gratuitous jokes about batshit here). And yes, Roswell is nearby (insert gratuitous jokes about End-Timers and Alien Conspiracies here). Alamogordo (yes, where they had the Harry Potter book-burning 'holy bonfire' in 2001) is not far away, and its Air Force ties also come with a generous helping of Evangelical Christian sanctimony and censorship.

    The area is geographically and politically more a part of West Texas than NM, and consistently votes along socially conservative lines. I am not surprised to see legislation like this coming out of the Carlsbad region.

    And for the record, the blowback has been so harsh that Brown is hastily 'revising' her bill.
    The popularity of the area for nuclear testing back in the good ol' days combined with your description of the general demeanor of the inhabitants makes a good case for the dangers of nuclear radiation.

    Never lived there, but spent a couple weeks in that area a few years ago, and I have to concur with your overall assessment. It's the only place where it became a habit to think, upon meeting a new person, "hmm, I wonder what their favorite conspiracy theory is?" (and it never took long to find out, unprompted by me) From little green men to the LBJ/Nixon gold mine, I think I heard 'em all.

    My apologies to any sane folk who live in the area.
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  22. #22
    Old revolutionary muravyets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Filigree View Post
    For those of you not from New Mexico, let me clarify. Cathrynn Brown is from Carlsbad, in the extreme southeastern corner of the state. Yes, where the gorgeous caverns are (inset gratuitous jokes about batshit here). And yes, Roswell is nearby (insert gratuitous jokes about End-Timers and Alien Conspiracies here). Alamogordo (yes, where they had the Harry Potter book-burning 'holy bonfire' in 2001) is not far away, and its Air Force ties also come with a generous helping of Evangelical Christian sanctimony and censorship.

    The area is geographically and politically more a part of West Texas than NM, and consistently votes along socially conservative lines. I am not surprised to see legislation like this coming out of the Carlsbad region.

    And for the record, the blowback has been so harsh that Brown is hastily 'revising' her bill.
    Revising, eh? If she had the sense evolution gave a flea, she'd withdraw the filthy thing under cover of "unintended issues/needs more work" and quietly go do something else for a while. A good long while, praying people forget about this someday.

    Of course, if she had as much sense as a flea, she never would have floated this turd in the first place.
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Don View Post
    The popularity of the area for nuclear testing back in the good ol' days combined with your description of the general demeanor of the inhabitants makes a good case for the dangers of nuclear radiation.

    Never lived there, but spent a couple weeks in that area a few years ago, and I have to concur with your overall assessment. It's the only place where it became a habit to think, upon meeting a new person, "hmm, I wonder what their favorite conspiracy theory is?" (and it never took long to find out, unprompted by me) From little green men to the LBJ/Nixon gold mine, I think I heard 'em all.

    My apologies to any sane folk who live in the area.
    I was stationed there up until 2000, so I missed out on the 2001 book burning (thank goodness, I think my head would have exploded). I loved it there and never saw anything of this batshit-crazy stuff. No, I take no offense as I like to think I and my fellow patriots were in the "sane folk" category.

    But back to the OP, this bill still makes no sense even after it's rewritten. There's nothing that prevents a bad guy from coercing his victim into saying the abortion is her choice. And if the police want evidence, they can always get DNA from the fetus rather than an enforced birth.

    Jeez, these pro-lifers are getting so imaginative I'd rather they put their energies into writing novels.


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