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Rep. Marsha Blackburn, tapped by Republican leadership to be the face of their new abortion ban legislation, comes up with a new—and completely bizarre—argument in favor of the legislation:
REP. MARSHA BLACKBURN (R-TN): The bill has been amended. It does allow exceptions for rape and incest and the life of the mother, and that was the appropriate step to take.

CRAIG MELVIN (MSNBC ANCHOR): But the bill only allows the exception for rape when it's reported. Only allows the exception for incest when it's reported. Is that correct?

BLACKBURN: There is a reporting requirement in the text of the bill. And the hope is that that will help in getting some of these perpetrators out of the population that are committing these crimes against women and against minor females.

You know, if Republicans really wanted to crack down on the crime of rape, wouldn't it be smarter to do something crazy like ... cracking down on the crime of rape? Maybe even helping the victims of rape? Instead, they are proposing to punish rape victims.

Sure, their bill gives an exception in cases where the rape was reported, but the exception wouldn't include victims of unreported rape. That accounts for roughly half of all rapes, which means the GOP's legislation would target the other half of rape victims, denying them legal access to abortion.

That might seem heartless to you, but according to Blackburn, the real reason for the legislation is to put more rapists behind bars by giving women an incentive to report rape. Obviously, that argument is complete and total bull, but Blackburn wasn't done:

MELVIN: Congresswoman, do you know how many cases of rape and incest go unreported in this country every year?

BLACKBURN: You know, I know that any rape and any incest is a horrible and horrific crime and what we want to do, and the purpose of the legislation today, Craig, is to make certain that those who are carrying out crimes against women, and against these unborn babies, are dealt with

On the bright side, Blackburn says Republicans want to make sure that "those who are carrying out crimes against women" are dealt with, but the legislation doesn't actually do anything meaningful to crack down on perpetrators of sexual violence. But what it does do—by her own admission—is make sure that those who carry out crimes "against these unborn babies" are "dealt with." And the way it deals with that is by making criminals out of women who want to exercise their constitutional right to choose.

I guess the moral of the story is that you don't need to be a Republican man to spout nonsense about abortion—Republican women are perfectly capable of it as well. Which explains why Marsha is the new face of the Republican War on Women.

Originally posted to The Jed Report on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 12:46 PM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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