Scott Walker Expands War on Women: Signs One of Most Punitive Anti-Abortion Bills
As expected, 2016 GOP presidential candidate and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has signed one of the most punitive anti-abortion bills in the nation, banning the procedure after 20 weeks with no exceptions for rape or incest, and jailing and fining doctors who don’t obey the law.
“When an unborn child can feel pain, we should be protecting that child,” Walker said at a signing ceremony Monday. Two other 2016 GOP candidates, Govs. Rick Perry of Texas and Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, have signed similar laws.
“Today marks the day Scott Walker has been waiting for—the day he got to sign his extreme abortion ban that he specifically asked the Wisconsin legislature to introduce,” said Rachel Thomas, spokeswoman for EMILY’s List, which supports pro-choice women candidates. “Walker doesn’t care how much he has to hurt women and families to advance his own radical ideological agenda.
“In fact, Scott Walker has no concept whatsoever of the challenges women face in their daily lives—exhibited by his egregious comments stating that women who become pregnant due to rape or incest are only concerned with those horrific crimes during the “initial months” of their pregnancy or that paying women fair wages is basically like handing out welfare checks.”
During Walker’s tenure as governor, he has defunded family planning services and eliminated equal pay protections, revealing an ultra-conservative view of women’s roles that go beyond denying constitutionally upheld reproductive rights.
“We can’t let Walker make restricting women’s reproductive freedom a footnote to his presidential announcement,” NARAL Pro-Choice America said. “If we don’t call Scott Walker out now, he won’t stop trying to control women’s destinies. It’s up to us to make him own what he really is – an anti-choice extremist who doesn’t trust people to make their own decisions, doesn’t trust women to guide their own lives and doesn’t support real reproductive freedom.”
As expected, religious conservatives applauded Walker, even though pro-choice groups will challenge the law in federal court.
Two other 2016 GOP contenders, Govs. Chris Christie of New Jersey and John Kasich of Ohio, have said they would sign a similar law if passed in their states.