In May, Republican members of two congressional committees—the House Judiciary Committee and House Energy and Commerce Committee—wrote letters to the departments of health and attorneys general in all 50 states, asking for thousands of pages of information about how each state monitors and regulates abortion.With the implied threat -- 'and if you are not sufficiently stymying women seeking abortion and the medical staff who serve them, we'll help you with that'.
“By now you are surely aware of the trial of Kermit Gosnell, who is charged with the serial murder of infants, the murder of a female patient, and other felonies committed in the operation of his abortion clinic in Philadelphia,” wrote committee chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) and Trent Franks (R-AZ), chairman of the Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice, in the letter sent to all state attorneys general. “We are seeking to find out if state and local governments are being stymied in their efforts to protect the civil rights of newborns and their mothers by legal or financial obstacles that are within the federal government’s power to address.”
The RAPEublicans were seeking to bolster with facts -- FACTS! -- their federal bill banning all abortions in all 50 states after '20 weeks post-fertilization'. (The bill has zero chance of passing in the Senate.)
Well, that didn't work out very well. In fact, I believe this is a sterling example of being hoist on one's own petard.
RH Reality Check obtained these documents from the various states and analyzed them. The data base is here.
An analysis of these documents shows that congressional Republicans will find no support for their arguments in favor of new restrictions on abortion care in the evidence presented by the states. In particular, to the extent that anti-choice advocates claim that women are being put at risk by abortion services, these documents—from the very state entities charged with overseeing and regulating abortion—show the contrary. They show that abortion in the United States is highly regulated and overwhelmingly safe.
Lots of details at the link and in the data base. RH Reality Check plans further analyses and reports.
I want to highlight just one of their findings: the myth of the 'born-alive' fetuses.
On the issue of infants being “born alive” after a botched abortion, Pennsylvania was the only state that reported such conduct. That was in the case of Kermit Gosnell, who has been convicted of murder.Doncha just love it when dimwits try to be smart? It just about always blows up real good. On them.
The “born-alive” fetus is a favorite theme of the anti-choice movement, which has perpetuated the claim that a large number of viable fetuses are born alive after failed second- and illegal third-trimester abortions as a way of shifting public opinion on abortion. This claim has been heavily criticized by public health experts who say this is an exceedingly rare occurrence and is in any case already covered by existing law and regulation. Nearly 90 percent of all abortions occur within the first trimester of pregnancy, the majority of these before nine weeks. In short, the vast majority of abortions in the United States occur at the embryonic stage, prior to the fetal stage. Since only a small share of all abortions are late second-trimester (after 20 weeks), and since third-trimester abortions are illegal in all but the most exceptional circumstances, it is not surprising that state records show that the myth of “born-alive” fetuses is, indeed, a myth.
ADDED: Media Matters for America demonstrates how thoroughly MSM in the US has bought into the lies surrounding the 20-week ban.