On Wednesday, Democrats seeking to revive the war on women meme latched onto comments by Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ), who said that “the incidence of rape resulting in pregnancy are very low.” The comment came in the context of a discussion about late-term abortion. Franks was stating that a Democratic amendment allowing rape and incest victims to get abortions even at late term was a red herring from the central issue of late-term abortion in general. He also said that the amendment should have required women to report rape and incest rather than merely citing them as a rationale for late-term abortion.
Democrats quickly attempted to turn Franks’ comments into a redo of former Rep. Todd Akin’s (R-MO) comments about women’s bodies rejecting rape as a cause of pregnancy. Judiciary Committee member Zoe Lofgren said, “I just find it astonishing to hear a phrase repeated that the incidence of pregnancy from rape is low. There’s no scientific basis for that. The idea that the Republican men on this committee think they can tell the women of America that tey have to carry to term the product of a rape is outrageous.”
In full context, however, Franks’ comments were nothing like Akin’s:
The point I was trying to make Mr. Nadler was that before when my friends on the left side of the aisle tired to make rape and incest the subject because the incidence of rape resulting in pregnancy are very low. But when you make that exception, there’s usually the requirement to report the rape within 48 hours.