Mendive- “Maybe it was a poor illustration”

Yesterday I predicted that “Dim Bulb” Idaho Republican Rep. Ron Mendive’s stupid remarks comparing abortion and prostitution would get national attention. Sure enough, the Associated Press picked it up

Screenshot_1_17_13_9_00_PM-2

and added Mendive’s defense,

Mendive, who was first elected to the Legislature last year, said he posed the question because he was incensed by what he believes is a double standard.
“It was just a question,” he said. “I do believe it’s a double standard.”
Prostitution is a choice “more so than an abortion would be,” he said.
“Because (in an abortion) there’s two beating hearts. And then there’s one,” Mendive said.
Mendive said he didn’t intend to trivialize human trafficking, but he still stressed that he believes prostitution is often a choice that a woman makes about what she does with her own body. Asked if he stood by his words, however, he conceded, “Maybe it was a poor illustration.”

It didn’t take long for responses like this one from Natasha Burton at Cosmopolitan,

Well, here’s your daily WTF?! moment.

At a presentation held by the American Civil Liberties Union, Idaho representative Ron Mendive, R-Coeur d’Alene, asked ACLU reps if their pro-abortion stance also means that they support prostitution. You know, because those things are so much alike.

Apparently, his (flawed) reasoning behind his query was that both abortion and prostitution are choices women make in regards to their bodies. Except that, he says, in the case of abortion, there are “two beating hearts” involved, whereas in prostitution there is only one. Thank you, sir, for that helpful analysis.

This isn’t the first time that an Idaho lawmaker has seriously shoved his foot into his mouth when it comes to women’s reproductive rights. Last year, Senator Chuck Winder told the Senate: “I would hope that when a woman goes into a physician with a rape issue, that that physician will indeed ask her about perhaps her marriage, was this pregnancy caused by normal relations in a marriage, or was it truly caused by a rape.” Seriously, dude? Wow. (Winder later claimed that he was “misunderstood.”)

Honestly, what is it with these guys? And why do they keep getting elected into major positions of power?

Well, I am not sure Mendive holds a “major position of power”, but other than that she is exactly right- what is up with these guys?  They always claim to be shocked at the reaction to their outlandish statements. Part of the reason is that they live in an echo chamber of right wing wackos and religious extremists. Their idiocy is reinforced by their circle of like minded idiots.

The Republican Party’s political advisers are starting to take notice of the serial stupidity of “these guys” when it comes to discussing rape. At the strategy planning get-together of House Republicans in Williamsburg, VA this week, GOP pollster Kellyanne Conway gave some blunt advise to the Congressmen, quit talking about rape.

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. — It’s way past time: House Republicans need to stop talking about rape.That’s the message GOP lawmakers got here Wednesday evening from Kellyanne Conway, a top GOP pollster. Conway dispensed the stern advice as part of a polling presentation she made alongside fellow GOP pollsters David Winston — an adviser to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) — and Dave Sackett. The comment was described by several sources in the room. Conway said rape is a “four-letter word,” and Republicans simply need to stop talking about it in their races for office.

That advice ought to apply to all women’s issues: rape, abortion, contraception, etc. Those Republican “guys” need to realize that the only politically savvy thing for them to do is to shut up.

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