Honest people can disagree about public policy regarding abortion. But yesterday's debate in the Missouri House of Representatives on HB 1327 & HB 2000 from Reps. Cynthia Davis (R-O'Fallon) and Bryan Pratt (R-Blue Springs) was ridiculous.
One of the more controversial portions of the Pratt/Davis proposal would require providers to notify prosecutors if any woman under age 18 seeks an abortion without a court order, in both the woman's home county and the county of the provider.
During the debate, Rep. Pratt and Rep. Brian Nieves (R-Union) decided that anyone who voted against the bill -- and this provision -- was actively "protecting rapists."
NIEVES: If a person votes against this legislation, to me, it says very clearly and profoundly that they are in favor of increasing the number of abortions and...
PRATT: Protecting rapists.
NIEVES: ...somehow creating this protective category for those who would rape underage girls.
PRATT: You're right gentleman. You're absolutely right.
Passions can certainly run high in this sort of debate, but rhetoric like we heard from Pratt and Nieves is out of bounds. There are plenty of reasons to oppose their bill -- and there's absolutely no reason to believe Representatives who voted against the legislation wants to "protect rapists."