If you were worried that the GOP might keep the House in 2014 with a cunning strategy of not saying things abour rape that are embarrassingly stupid — fret not.
Exhibit A: Republican Congressman Phil Gingrey (R-Marietta, Georgia), who was interviewed in the Marietta Daily about rape. Specifically, Gingrey spoke about former Republican congressman, and failed Senate candidate, Todd Akin. Akin lost his election after discussing his views on “legitimate rape,” and his weird comments about women’s bodies having a way of shutting down rape-induced pregnancies:
“And in Missouri, Todd Akin … was asked by a local news source about rape and he said, ‘Look, in a legitimate rape situation’ — and what he meant by legitimate rape was just look, someone can say I was raped: a scared-to-death 15-year-old that becomes impregnated by her boyfriend and then has to tell her parents, that’s pretty tough and might on some occasion say, ‘Hey, I was raped.’ That’s what he meant when he said legitimate rape versus non-legitimate rape. I don’t find anything so horrible about that. But then he went on and said that in a situation of rape, of a legitimate rape, a woman’s body has a way of shutting down so the pregnancy would not occur. He’s partly right on that.”
Gingrey claims to “know these things” as an OB-GYN.
Gingrey went on to defend Akin’s bizarre comments about women having a way to shut down rape-induced pregnancies:
“And 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. And yet the media took that and tore it apart.”
The scientific literature actually says the opposite. In fact, Robin Baker got lots of criticism for pointing out that the statistics suggest that rape is more likely to lead to pregnancy in his book Sperm Wars. I would rather trust scientists who do actual research studies, than the uninformed prejudice of a 75 year old man who might have been qualified to talk about what science believed a century ago.
This is the modern GOP in a nutshell. It would rather trust its own prejudices than consult actual scientific research.