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Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Posted: March 14, 2006 09:54 PM

Lieberman Betrays Rape Victims, Tells Them to Take a "Short Ride"


In Connecticut, rape counseling activists say a recent study concludes that about 20% of state hospitals routinely refuse to offer emergency contraceptives to rape victims who are determined to be ovulating at the time they're attacked. A proposed bill would require them to do so.

And what sayith Joe Lieberman about this? According to The New Haven Register:

This fight isn't exclusively being drawn along party lines.U.S. Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman, who often takes a conservative line on social issues, is facing a liberal Democratic primary challenge from wealthy Greenwich businessman Ned Lamont. But that hasn't stopped Lieberman from supporting the approach of the Catholic hospitals when it comes to contraceptives for rape victims.

Lieberman said he believes hospitals that refuse to give contraceptives to rape victims for "principled reasons" shouldn't be forced to do so. "In Connecticut, it shouldn't take more than a short ride to get to another hospital," he said.

I'm sure that waving a chicken over your head is a marvelous cure for something but as yet we still don't call it medicine in this country. That access to emergency contraception is essential to the health and well being of rape victims is undeniable, and if Catholics can't provide that then they should get out of the emergency medical business. Having to deal with their superstitious voodoo nonsense applied as science is just one more indignity rape victims do not need. If Catholics want rape victims to be forced to carry the fetuses of their attackers that's great, let them move to South Dakota.

As Matt Stoller says:
What Lieberman said today about a short drive to a hospital is immensely cruel....Having a medical procedure done, any medical procedure, is embarrassing, intrusive, and scary, especially in a system as f**ked up as ours where doctors don't really care about you because they are paid to avoid mistakes with paperwork. When you combine with this making the decision to have children or not, and maybe in a bunch of cases dumbf**k boyfriends who either aren't around or aren't helpful, the agony for some women is just immense. To talk about hospitals denying legal medical care because commuting is easy in Connecticut is really monstrous. It's so out of touch, so banal in the evil sense, and so downright elitist and cowardly.

It is outrageous and yet quite predictable that Lieberman once again provides "bi-partisan" cover to this especially ugly brand of religious extremism. His cloture vote put Alito on the Supreme Court and paved the way for what is happening today in South Dakota, Mississippi and Missouri. That he continues to be considered a "friend of choice" by both NARAL and Planned Parenthood is an absolutely contempt worthy. They should both be denouncing him loud and long and crying foul on his claim to be "pro-choice" rather than rubber stamping his nonsense.

I called NARAL Connecticut and spoke with Executive Director Carolyn Treiss, who said that she has a call into Lieberman's office and that they have not yet returned her call. Susan Yoland, Executive Director of Planned Parenthood Connecticut, however, says that they have no plans to do any kind of press release or make any kind of statement denouncing Lieberman for his position.

What the hell it is going to take to get them to call LIeberman out for being the coathanger-wielding creep he really is?

Jane Hamsher blogs at firedoglake.com

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