WOMEN
02/20/2017 11:56 am ET

Politician Uses Baffling Logic To Justify Anti-Abortion Legislation

This may be a new low.
The South Dakota state capitol in Pierre. 
Education Images via Getty Images
The South Dakota state capitol in Pierre. 

Another day, another State Representative hammering away at your bodily autonomy.

One South Dakota State Representative has defended the state’s already intense anti-abortion legislation by saying that limiting access to the procedure is in no way an “attack on women” because, after all, “half of the abortions include the death of a girl.”

Last week, Rep. Steven Haugaard made these comments in his case for House Bill 1101 on the South Dakota House floor. The bill would punish doctors for performing “pain-capable” abortions with a Class 6 Felony (as opposed to the state’s current punishment of a Class 1 Misdemeanor). The sentence for a Class 6 Felony in South Dakota is two years at a state penitentiary or a $4,000 fine, or both. H.B. 1101 passed the House on Tuesday of last week, and now just has to pass the Senate vote to be made into law. 

Women in South Dakota can currently access abortion up until the 13th week of gestation (after which the procedure has been deemed “pain capable”) or up to 20 weeks if the woman’s life is at risk. 

Rep. Haugaard’s attempt to justify limiting access to abortion to protect women and girls may be a new low. After all, limiting abortion access directly affects women’s health. The sex of the fetus is irrelevant: abortions and access to them affect women, not men. Period. 

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