Pro-Abortion Groups Mislead in Rape Attack on Tax-Funded Abortion Ban

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Feb 1, 2011   |   1:11PM   |   Washington, DC

Leading pro-abortion groups are attacking a new bill that would ban federal taxpayer funding of abortions with an attack on the bill claiming it would change national policy when it comes to victims of statutory rape.

Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL, says the bill is “basically putting more restrictions on what was defined historically as rape.” However, it turns out the claims are false and no substantive change in federal policy is forthcoming.

The attack concerns HR 3, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, that rolls several federal rules that have to be passed annually to prevent taxpayer funding of abortions in various governmental departments and programs into one permanent federal law. It would also remove any concerns from the Obamacare law that it could somehow be used to finance abortions with federal funds.

NARAL, Planned Parenthood and other pro-abortion activists claim the bill, by changing the rape exception language to include “forcible rape” suddenly attacks women victimized by rape.

But Douglas Johnson, the legislative director for the National Right to Life Committee, says that’s not the case, and told the bill “would codify the substance of the policy that was in place from 1993 on” when Congress added rape and incest exceptions to the Hyde Amendment.

“We do not believe that the Hyde Amendment has ever been construed to permit federal funding of abortion based merely on the youth of the mother (“statutory rape”), nor are we aware of evidence that federal funding of abortion in such cases has ever been the practice,” Johnson explained. “It is true that the new bills would not allow general federal funding of abortion on all under-age pregnant girls — but this is no change in policy.”

“In falsely claiming that it is a change in policy, the pro-abortion advocacy groups really are engaged in a brazen effort greatly expand federal funding for abortion.  They want to federally fund the abortion of tens of thousands of healthy babies of healthy moms, based solely on the age of their mothers,” Johnson explains. “We would oppose such an expansion of federal funding of abortion.”

Johnson also tells the longstanding FBI definition of “forcible rape” explicitly excludes statutory rape. As FBI documents indicate:

Forcible rape, as defined in the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program, is the carnal knowledge of a female forcibly and against her will. Attempts or assaults to commit rape by force or threat of force are also included; however, statutory rape (without force) and other sex offenses are excluded.

A rape by force involving a female victim and a familial offender is counted as a forcible rape and not an act of incest. All other crimes of a sexual nature are
considered to be Part II offenses; as such, the UCR Program collects only arrest data for those crimes. The offense of statutory rape, in which no force is used but
the female victim is under the age of consent, is included in the arrest total for the sex offenses category.

Johnson said the Hyde Amendment, which prevents federal funding of abortions but not throughout every federal government department and program, “does permit federal funding of abortions for women who are impregnated through assaults, regardless of age, which of course includes drug-assisted rape and rape of unconscious women, to cite just two of the more ludicrous examples invented by pro-abortion propagandists in recent days.”