Everyone, even some Republicans, were shocked by Donald Trump's recent statements endorsing punishment for women who have abortions, if Republicans ever manage to get the procedure banned.
“There has to be some form of punishment,” Trump said. “For the woman?” Matthews asked. “Yeah,” Trump said, nodding.Typically, even the most ardent pro-lifers don't say that women should be punished if they have illegal abortions; they say that the doctors who perform abortions should be punished.
One, all the Republicans getting verklempt over Trump's statements are really only outraged because he said out loud what their position really is. For political reasons, they know they can't say they want to throw women in jail. But that's the end result of their policies. Because banning abortion won't stop women from having abortions. Abortions happen in countries where abortion is really, really illegal with a conviction bringing hard and long jail time. Banning abortion just makes women have risky, unsafe abortions. So, if Republicans want to stop abortion totally, eventually they'll have to start throwing women in jail. In fact, some women in America have ALREADY been thrown in jail for terminating a pregnancy.
Multiple U.S. women -- with few options to get themselves to one of their state's dwindling legal clinics -- have been arrested for illegal abortions after they bought abortion-inducing medication online. And thanks to the growing number of laws aimed at protecting “fetal rights,” other women have been punished for doing activities that allegedly harmed their pregnancies. Americans have been charged with murder for allegedly seeking to harm their fetuses by attempting suicide, using illicit drugs, or even falling down the stairs. LinkSecond, the idea that women aren't already being punished is ludicrous. Laws making women travel hundreds of miles, spend time and money to stay overnight in a strange city, have a forced ultrasound, be forced to hear anti-abortion propaganda, and making women walk through a gauntlet of anti-abortion zealots, are all intended to punish (and thus discourage) women who are having an abortion. They are being deliberately punished for exercising a CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT.
What Trump said was chilling and terrible politics. But what he said was absolutely the Republican position. He just wasn't supposed to say it out loud.