Concord - Congressional Republicans are proposing to drastically narrow the definition of rape that qualifies for health care coverage. H.R. 3 would redefine rape in these cases to only include "forcible rape," a definition that rules out a woman being drugged, children who are victims of statutory rape, and many date rape scenarios. Republican Speaker John Boehner said the bill would be a "top priority" for the new Congress.
H.R. 3's passage would prohibit access to abortion by girls who have been the victims of statutory rape, even if they are just 10 or 11 years old. It would also force women to prove they were "forcibly raped" making them victims all over again, and women who were drugged or threatened could be denied the right to an abortion.
"Republicans should be working on creating jobs and building the economy, not altering rape laws and limiting health care options for victims," said Harrell Kirstein, press secretary for the New Hampshire Democratic Party. "Not only shouldn't this bill be a top priority for Congress, it shouldn't have even been considered in the first place."
"Congressmen Guinta and Bass should break with Speaker Boehner, immediately denounce this shameful attempt to narrow the definition of rape, and promise not to vote for H.R. 3 with that section in it," continued Kirstein. "Regardless of what Republicans want to call it, rape is rape, and the focus should be on protecting victims, not narrowing the crime."