A U.S. study released last month estimates that 64,000 women and girls became pregnant from rape in states that have implemented abortion bans. The research has reignited the debate about a women’s right to choose. But anti-abortion groups in one of the most restrictive states say the data presented in the study is flawed.
“We have so much to celebrate,” Dr. Ingrid Skop, vice president and director of medical affairs at the Charlotte Lozier Institute, said from the podium. “It is estimated that approximately 10,000 babies are alive in Texas today who would not be if the state of Texas had not chosen to support unborn life.”
Texas Alliance for Life has been oddly silent since the release of the study, sending out a single tweet saying, “A child conceived in rape does not deserve to be killed for the crime of his father.” Though the rally promises to promote the “vast resources” available for pregnant Texans, speakers include representatives of the Charlotte Lozier Institute, a radical anti-abortion think tank that promotes misinformation, such as that fetuses can experience pain at 15 week (the current scientific consensus is 23-24 weeks)
“That’s a tall order. If we could only truly eliminate rape, we definitely have penalties in the state of Texas or for people to be brought to trial who do rape people,” said Amy O’Donnell, spokeswoman for the Texas Alliance For Life. She says they support the lack of a rape exception in the Texas ban. “We stand in support of protecting all babies, even those conceived through the act of rape, and every child no matter the circumstance of their conception is worthy of life,” she said.
Amy O’Donnell with the Texas Alliance for Life says their attorneys do not believe they can ban interstate travel. She also says there’s a lot of misinformation about medical exceptions they’re working to combat.
Amy O’Donnell, communications director for the Texas Alliance for Life, says Cox’s story exposes the stakes for two people – Kate Cox and the daughter she is carrying.
“I believe that people are moved by Kate Cox’s story. The pro-life side is moved to respond to the value of her unborn child’s life,” O’Donnell says. Even if the fetus were to die soon after birth or survive with a disability, “we believe it’s discriminatory to discriminate against anyone who has a disability,” O’Donnell says. “Kate Cox’s daughter is no exception.”
The reelection campaign of Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris is seizing on the stories of women like Cox to draw a distinction with Republicans – especially former President Donald Trump, who said during his 2016 campaign that there needed to be some punishment for women who have abortions.