JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Democratic groups are reacting with outrage to comments made by Rep. Tila Hubrecht, R-Dexter, during debate over a controversial “personhood” bill that could make abortion legal in the state.
During Tuesday’s discussion on the perfection of Rep. Mike Moon’s HJR 98, which seeks to “[recognize] the right of every unborn human child at every state of biological development,” Democrats criticized the bill for many reasons, including that the resolution had no exceptions for rape or incest.
Hubrecht then stated that a pregnancy resulting from a rape could be seen as a “silver lining.”
“Sometimes bad things happen…but sometimes God can give us a silver lining through the birth of a child,” she said.
Democrats immediately took umbrage with the comment.
The president of the Missouri Democratic Party, Crystal Brinkley, called on gubernatorial candidates from the opposing party to renounce Hubrecht’s comments.
“It is astounding that Republicans continue to believe that a woman must bring to term the child of her rapist,” Brinkley said in a statement. “That choice should belong to the victim, not Jefferson City politicians. Missourians deserve to know if the Republican candidates for Governor agree with this outrageous statement.”
Brinkley and other Democrats also called the comments “another Todd Akin moment.” Akin, of course, is the former Republican Missouri Congressman who made comments that a woman’s body could reject a pregnancy in cases of “legitimate rape.” Those comments alone caused him to lose his bid for Sen. Claire McCaskill’s seat. The Missouri Democratic State Committee has already used the comments to solicit donations.
Hubrecht responded to the backlash Thursday morning at a press conference with Moon, not rescinding her comments but urging that she simply desired to defend the “innocent.”
“I do not believe in America it is right to punish innocent people for someone else’s crime; that is not our system of justice,” she said. “The baby did nothing wrong, the woman did nothing wrong. The man who raped the woman is the one who done [sic] something wrong and should be punished.”
Ike Skelton, the director of Missourians for the Unborn, also voiced his support for Hubrecht through a statement read by Moon at the conference. He rebuked Democrats who called Moon’s measure and Hubrecht’s words as extreme.
“The most extreme abortion related proposal is abortion itself,” he said. “Killing unborn babies is extreme, not trying to save them.”