Another Invasive Ultrasound Bill? Yep

Man, you’d think the Republican party would have learned a thing or two from last year, when they got blasted for a whole range of authoritarian policies that harm women and lost the female vote by a sizable margin. Not in Arkansas, where they want to require invasive vaginal probes before a woman can get an abortion:

The new Rapert bill would prohibit an abortion if a heartbeat is detected, a limitation that moves the potential prohibition in Arkansas law to the 5th week of pregnancy, far beyond the pre-viability protection period that the U.S. Supreme Court has repeatedly upheld. Viability has generally been considered at the 23rd to 24th week, though anti-abortion legislatures have tried to move that to 20 weeks, a move that is under challenge in court. Such legislation is being offered again in Arkansas and could be considered in committee this week. It’s even meaner in some ways than Rapert’s bill — no exception for rape and incest or mental health of mother.

The new Rapert bill would require a check for heartbeat by “standard medical practice, including the use of medical devices as determined by standard medical practice.” The bill doesn’t spell it out, but at the earliest stage of a pregnancy, this requirement would mean a transvaginal probe. To get an abortion under the Rapert legislation, a woman in the earliest stage of pregnancy (when most abortions are sought and performed) would be forced to submit to a vaginal probe rather than a standard ultrasound passed over the abdomen. And, if five weeks pregnant and a heartbeat was detected, a woman would be told an abortion was illegal.

Sounds like this legislator has an extra ‘t’ in his name. Because this is rape — legally-sanctioned rape.

17 comments on this post.
  1. peterh:

    Like Arthur Dent, I have always thought there might be something fundamentally wrong with the universe – we seem to have an infinite supply of stupid.

  2. tsig:

    The Raper(t) Bill??

  3. Michael Heath:

    A fine illustration on what happens when the cynics (social dominators) are supplanted by the true believers (authoritarians or worse yet, double highs – social dominators who are also authoritarians).

    The left has them as well (Link 1 then Link 2); fortunately they have no power.

  4. tsig:

    Also works as “Rape hurt”.

  5. Ellie:

    I’m not sure why they don’t just pass a law requiring all post pubescent females to submit to a pregnancy test once a month and lock up those who are pregnant. They could put them in cells, allowing, of course, conjugal visits for the married ones. The others, they could parade on a platform in the center of town with a sign saying “SLUT” above it.

    The “gentleman” is aptly named.

  6. anubisprime:

    These extremely poor excuses of vapid carbuncles on the ass of humanity are all seemingly enthused with a gut-wrenching paranoid fear that the wimmins’ are not subject to their maleness any more…the poor bunnies are feeling all concubineless….and them wimmins’ ain’t listening to their superiority attitude not no more and they is losing control of the baby makin’ machines / slave….diddums !

  7. jnorris:

    Looks like Bobby Jindal’s political future in the Tea Party is very bleak indeed. The Arkansas party still believes in being the party of stupid.

  8. Pteryxx:

    I’m not sure why they don’t just pass a law requiring all post pubescent females to submit to a pregnancy test once a month and lock up those who are pregnant.

    That’s not as hypothetical as one might think:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/aug/08/louisiana-school-forced-pregnancy-test

    and

    http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/dwindling-abortion-rights-intrusive-drug-tests-are-pregnant-women-second-class

    Last week, the National Advocates for Pregnant Women released a report whose title is as frightening as its contents: “Arrests of and forced interventions on pregnant women in the United States 1973-2005” published in the Journal of Health Politics, Policy, and Law. The report documents more than 400 cases where women have been locked up in jail or psych wards or forced to undergo medical intervention while carrying wanted pregnancies (and they’ve unearthed 250 more in the last 7 years, which did not make it into the report).

    Some highlights: A woman gets pregnant while on Depo Provera, miscarries, and is imprisoned for a year on murder charges; a woman is involuntarily committed because she failed to get a recommended follow-up test for gestational diabetes; a woman planning a home birth is court-ordered to undergo a cesarean and taken against her will to the hospital for forced surgery.

    These cases are largely based on legal theory that gives a woman’s pregnancy more constitutional rights than herself, theory which has given rise to “fetal personhood” campaigns and “unborn victims of violence” acts.

  9. raven:

    The Arkansas party still believes in being the party of stupid.

    They like these culture war bills because they are cheap and easy.

    It costs the state nothing to beat up and discriminate against their usual hate targets, women, gays, scientists, and reality.

    Solving real world problems is hard and can cost a lot. So they don’t bother.

    There is a movement in the GOP to stop being the haters and idiots party. I don’t see that it will get anywhere.

    They need to lose a few more electoral cycles and their base of old white christofascists needs to take the inevitable next step. To being old white dead christofascists. Demographic shifts happen but they are slow.

  10. Modusoperandi:

    Now, look, they’re just checking for illegals.
     
    raven “Solving real world problems is hard and can cost a lot. So they don’t bother.”
    Pah! Everybody knows that all the other problems come from moral decline. And you do know where moral decline comes, right? Correct: ladyparts.

  11. chisaihana5219:

    I wonder what the statistics are on how many miscarriages would be caused by using a vaginal probe in the first few weeks of pregancy? If the doctor accidentally went too far, would it be considered an abortion? Has this legislator ever researched that? Of course not. Seems that folks with worms in their brains like to open cans of worms for other people. It may be cold, snowy and icy up here, but at least our brains aren’t frozen.

  12. Ichthyic:

    The left has them as well (Link 1 then Link 2); fortunately they have no power.

    actually, at least one of those was replaced by a teabagger.

    this is better?

  13. Ichthyic:

    addendum:

    “fortunately they have no power.”

    uh, if they are xians, they most certainly do. the “D” or the “R” next to their names as representatives is beside the point.

    nice try though.

  14. More Rape-ublican Bullshit | Riffing Religion:

    [...] at Dispatches from the Culture War Ed Brayton is reporting that yet another bill mandating a transvaginal ultrasound (otherwise known as the Religious Rape Rod) for women seeking an abortion. This time, it’s in [...]

  15. Dr X:

    The advocates of this bill are rapists, pure and simple.

  16. jameshanley:

    “The Rapert bill”

    You think they’d at least have the sense to have someone else sponsor the damn thing.

  17. eric:

    Ellie @5:

    I’m not sure why they don’t just pass a law requiring all post pubescent females to submit to a pregnancy test once a month and lock up those who are pregnant.

    No, no, no. EVERY woman is a slutty slut slut, pregnant or not. The proper christian solution is to lock them all up, pregnant or not, then charge a fee for access to their cells.

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