an expert consultant by states defending their forced-birther laws in court.
Most recently, writes Irin Carmon at MSNBC, Wisconsin and Alabama, asked him to consult with them and recruit expert witnesses to defend their laws requiring doctors at abortion clinics to have admitting privileges at local hospitals. Such privileges are widely seen as medically unnecessary, and many of the lawmakers who have initiated them freely admit that their objective in getting the laws on the books is to shut down clinics. In Texas, a new admitting privileges law has caused a third of abortion clinics to close their doors. If the Alabama law is upheld in court, three of the state's abortion clinics would be forced to close; in Wisconsin, one clinic would be affected.
But successfully navigating the courts in such matters requires that the laws meet constitutional objections. Backers must show that there was a legitimate foundation for passing a restriction on abortion, a key one of which is, as Carmon notes, protecting women's health. One of the key arguments in this realm centers on "post-abortion syndrome," which a plethora of unbiased experts says is non-existent.
Please read below the fold for more on this story.
Rue's history in this matter traces back more than three decades. One would be justified in calling him a quack except that he doesn't even qualify for that given that he has no medical or health-related credentials whatsoever:
Rue claims no public health research training. An online biography notes that he “received his Ph.D. in Family Relations from the University of North Carolina in 1975,” but not that it was from the School of Home Economics. It also describes him as the co-director, with his wife, of the Institute for Pregnancy Loss in Jacksonville, Florida.Among others who have debunked the bogus "post-abortion syndrome" were the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges in December 2011 and the American Psychological Association’s Task Force on Mental Health and Abortion in 2008. They both found that the mental health status of women with unwanted pregnancies remained the same whether they gave birth or underwent an abortion.
In 1987, President Ronald Reagan dispatched his surgeon general, C. Everett Koop, to issue a report on the health risks to women who had abortions. (The idea came from then-Reagan advisor Dinesh D’Souza.) Rue’s official biography describes him as a “special consultant” to that effort.
Koop was staunchly against abortion, but Rue nonetheless failed to persuade him. In January 1989, Koop outraged his ideological allies when he wrote to Reagan saying there would be no report because “the scientific studies do not provide conclusive data about the health effects of abortion on women.” Koop later clarified in testimony before Congress that he was referring to mental health effects. (The data on abortion’s relative physical safety to the woman is well-documented, Koop noted).
But, if more proof were needed of the unscientifically motivated mindset of the forced birthers, Wisconsin has paid Rue nearly $50,000 in consulting fees for his "expertise." In their zeal to control women, they don't care at all about women's health or their actual experience with abortion.