House Republicans Try to Redefine “Rape”

Tuesday, February 01, 2011
(graphic: Louisiana Foundation Against Sexual Assault)
In their efforts to curb federal funding for abortions, pro-life Republicans in the U.S. House have introduced legislation that would create a new definition of rape.
Since the mid-1970s, the government has been prevented from funding abortions, except in cases of a rape or incest. Under the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act,” rape would be limited to “forcible rape”—a term that does not exist in federal statutes.
If adopted into law, the new provision could exclude many cases of rape covered by current law, such as statutory rape, or rape of a minor.
In addition to the fact that “forcible rape” is not defined in the federal criminal code, the proposed legislation does not provide its own explanation, either. This has alarmed pro-choice advocates who fear the lack of definition could result in no abortions being covered by federal funding in certain states.
-Noel Brinkerhoff
The House GOP's Plan to Redefine Rape (by Nick Baumann, Mother Jones)
How 173 Congressmen Are Trying to Redefine Rape (by Asher Smith, Huffington Post)


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