Jan 25 2013
Just one day after quietly introducing a whopper of a bill that would categorize abortions for pregnancies resulting from rape or incest as “tampering with evidence,” New Mexico State Rep. Cathrynn N. Brown found herself doing some swift damage control.
As it still currently appears on the New Mexico Legislature’s page, Bill HB206 is blazingly, insanely straightforward. It explains that “tampering with evidence shall include procuring or facilitating an abortion, or compelling or coercing another to obtain an abortion of a fetus that is the result of criminal sexual penetration or incest with the intent to destroy evidence of the crime” and states “whoever commits tampering with evidence shall be punished” with varying degrees of felony charges. Isn’t it sweet when politicians try to defend the cause of “life” by categorizing fetuses as “evidence”? As one skeptic pondered Thursday, “So I assume, as evidence, the court will be holding the fetus in a locker and destroying it after trial?”
But Brown’s clever ruse to redefine a woman’s constitutional right as criminal tampering didn’t go over very well, and as the bill made national headlines Thursday, Brown not so coincidentally removed her contact information from her legislature page. But her personal Web page, which greets visitors with a photo from the governor’s prayer breakfast, tells a tale of somebody who’s been trying to tweak the narrative. There’s a record of two now-deleted posts entered on Thursday evening, followed by a statement from Brown that reads, “This is the bill that I will introduce that protects women and girls from incest and other sex crimes: It makes it clear that the mother of the fetus would never be charged. This bill ensures the prosecution of the offender and protection of the victim.”
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