Thursday, January 28, 2010

John Edwards and coerced abortion

A new book alleges (it is not proven) that in 2007 John Edwards -- in the midst of his presidential campaign -- tried to persuade his pregnant mistress, Reille Hunter, to have an abortion.

Whether or not the allegation is true, it calls to mind the fact that coercion and even violence against pregnant women is not uncommon. On Jan. 5 a Utah man was arrested for giving his pregnant girlfriend an abortifacient, without her knowledge, to kill their unborn child. This happened after he repeatedly asked her to have an abortion but she refused. The man is charged with "unlawful termination of a pregnancy."

Also recently, a Florida man was charged with murdering his pregnant girlfriend because she refused to get an abortion.

And Dave Andrusko writes:
According to the Associated Press, a mother accused of "giving her pregnant teen daughter drugs to kill the fetus and induced labor will spend three years under house arrest, a judge ordered Friday." After Tonuya Rainey's 16-year-old daughter "gave birth on a toilet at home on March 6, 2009, authorities say, Rainey threw the fetus in the garbage."

The teenager was 24 weeks pregnant when her mother "gave her a combination of pills" to induce the abortion, according to AP. Rainey's public defender told Broward Circuit Judge Matthew Destry, "This was not done to be mean or out of anything but love for her daughter."

The plea bargain was worked out after Rainey pled guilty "to five felony and two misdemeanor charges ranging from unlawful termination of pregnancy, practicing medicine without a license, child abuse and unlawful disposal of fetal remains," the AP reported.
MCCL supports legislation to prevent coerced or forced abortions.