Texas Governor Greg Abbott provided a lukewarm answer this week when challenged by his state’s abortion ban that makes no exceptions for rape or incest: take the plan B.
The Republican governor’s horribly thought-out answer for victims of sexual assault was provided throughout a radio section to be aired on the native radio present on Sunday. Lone Star Coverage, The Dallas Morning Information reported for the primary time.
“We wish to help these victims, however these victims can even instantly entry well being care, in addition to report them,” Abbott stated, maybe not realizing that this answer misses the truth that, as just lately as ‘In 2016, almost 80% of rapes and sexual assaults go unreported, in accordance with the Division of Justice.
“By accessing well being care instantly, they’ll get the Plan B capsule that may forestall being pregnant from taking place within the first place. By way of reporting to legislation enforcement, that may be sure that the rapist can be caught and prosecuted,” the GOP governor defined.
Previous to the Supreme Court docket’s determination to overturn Roe vs. Wade fell in June, the Lone Star State nonetheless had a number of the most restrictive guidelines within the nation when it got here to performing the process.
Within the fall of final yr, Texas handed a invoice that banned the process usually after six weeks — when coronary heart exercise can start to be detected by clinicians within the embryo — making of the ban colloquially referred to as a heartbeat invoice.
Mr Abbott, who faces a gubernatorial problem from progressive Beto O’Rourke this fall, has been referred to as out by his Democratic opponent for having ineffective insurance policies relating to tackling crime and the reproductive rights of the state.
“Greg Abbott signed essentially the most excessive abortion ban within the nation, with no exceptions for rape or incest,” marketing campaign spokesman Chris Evans stated in an interview with The Dallas Morning Information. “The rape arrest fee has dropped almost in half since he took workplace as he permits greater than 3,000 untested rape kits to collect mud in his state crime labs.”
Mr. O’Rourke’s marketing campaign spokesman’s accusation of the state’s backlog of rape kits was confirmed based mostly on a latest investigation by The Dallas Observer. Within the native newspaper’s findings, they found that inside the Texas Division of Public Security (DPS), 3,510 kits are at present being examined statewide.
That checklist, the outlet identified, doesn’t embrace Dallas County’s two separate backlogs, which aren’t a part of the DPS. In a type of backlogs, with kits courting again to 1996, there are 1,000 dormant kits, and within the second, operating from 2011 to 2019, there are round 900 kits.
Even exterior of the governor’s suggestion that the important thing to stopping undesirable rape pregnancies can be to report sexual assaults, well being specialists balked at his answer that Plan B may be the one answer to stopping rape. undesirable pregnancies at supply.
Emergency contraception, particularly in a state the place Medicaid doesn’t cowl it for low-income individuals, shouldn’t be broadly obtainable.
Moreover, Plan B shouldn’t be totally efficient in stopping undesirable pregnancies and is suspected to be even much less so if you’re an obese particular person. In response to a 2016 research, individuals with a BMI of 30 or extra had a considerably decrease degree of levonorgestrel EC of their bloodstream than individuals with a decrease BMI.
Other than effectiveness, accessibility to emergency contraceptives is a big hurdle that the governor didn’t elaborate on throughout his remarks on the radio present.
Public well being specialists have warned in the identical Dallas Morning Information article that docs and medical suppliers could also be hesitant to even deliver up the topic of Plan B with sufferers for concern it might violate new state legislation that features broad language suggesting lawsuits might be filed in opposition to individuals who help, encourage or carry out abortions.
The Governor of Texas has conceded some extent within the debate over the abortion ban. In different phrases, he needed to make clear the language surrounding the brand new state legal guidelines in order that it’s clear that when an individual’s life is at risk throughout a being pregnant – equivalent to throughout an ectopic being pregnant – there might be have exceptions.
“We have to present extra readability on what we’re doing to guard the mom’s life,” Mr Abbott stated. “There appears to be an ambiguity concerning the safety of the mom’s life. That is of paramount significance, whether or not it’s what is known as an ectopic being pregnant or different issues that moms face. Medical doctors want to concentrate on all of the various things they’ll do to avoid wasting the mom’s life.
Mr. Abbott and Mr. O’Rourke will face off midterm in November for the governorship of Texas.
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