In the days since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, Republicans have publicly cheered the decision — though reportedly warning against its fallout in private — and, in some instances, displayed yet again their lack of knowledge about the human reproductive system that they seek to legislate.
Last week’s decision overturned a case that has been affirmed several times over by other Supreme Court justices and signaled that this court may be open to reevaluating other landmark rulings on marriage equality and contraception. It sparked immediate, widespread protests across the country as thousands showed up to support abortion rights. But it is a significant victory for anti-abortion groups that have campaigned for decades to overturn Roe and found champions of their cause in Republican lawmakers, whose reactions to the ruling show a fundamental misunderstanding of how the body works and indicate their increasingly extremist plans to ban abortion in the US.
Rep. Mary Miller called the ruling a “victory for white life.”
“I want to thank you for the historic victory for white life in the Supreme Court yesterday,” Miller said to former president Donald Trump at a campaign rally on Saturday night. Her campaign spokesperson later claimed she “clearly meant to say ‘victory for Right to Life.’”
Arkansas gubernatorial nominee Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Republicans will make sure fetuses are as safe as children in a classroom.
At a rally last month, while asserting her anti-abortion stance, Sanders said, “We will make sure that when a kid is in the womb, they're as safe as they are in a classroom.” Her remarks came one day after the Uvalde elementary school shooting, where 19 children and two adults were killed by a shooter.
Utah Rep. Karianne Lisonbee said women can control their “intake of semen.”
"I got a text message today saying I should seek to control men's ejaculations and not women's pregnancies," Lisonbee said Friday after the court’s decision, adding that the text suggested she doesn’t “trust women enough to make choices to control their own body.”
“And my response is, I do trust women enough to control when they allow a man to ejaculate inside of them and to control that intake of semen,” the Utah Republican went on. “So that may be inflammatory. But I think as a legislature we have the responsibility to create a legal framework that is friendly and supporting rights.”
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said Friday that he is making June 24 an “annual holiday” for his office.
“SCOTUS just overruled Roe & Casey, ending one of the most morally & legally corrupt eras in US history. Praise the Lord. Abortion is now illegal in Texas,” Paxton tweeted. “And today I’m closing my office—and making it an annual holiday—as a memorial to the 70 million lives lost bc of abortion.” He also issued an advisory Friday saying some district attorneys “may choose to immediately pursue criminal prosecutions” even though it’s unclear if pre-Roe bans instantly came into effect.
Rep. Matt Gaetz falsely described abortions as “unborn [babies] denied due process when their skulls are crushed.”
“The Constitution is clear that Americans are entitled to life and should not be deprived of it without due process of law. Every day, the unborn are denied this due process when their skulls are crushed and they are ripped from their mothers’ wombs, limb by limb, until their little hearts stop beating,” Gaetz tweeted. “That ends today. States are now free to create law that opposes the evil of abortion and enshrines the unborn’s right to life.”
The overwhelming majority of abortions take place in the first trimester of pregnancy, according to the CDC. And by 2020, more than half of all abortions in the US were done by medication, the Guttmacher Institute found. Grisly descriptions and propaganda pictures of abortion are intentionally misleading, often using “manipulative imagery” to confuse and influence people.
Yesli Vega, a Virginia Republican nominee for Congress, suggested it’s harder to get pregnant from rape because “there’s so much going on in the body,” Axios reported.
At an event last month while discussing the Supreme Court possibly overturning Roe, Vega was asked if “it’s harder for a woman to get pregnant if she's been raped.” She responded: “Well, maybe because there's so much going on in the body. I don't know. I haven't, you know, seen any studies. But if I'm processing what you're saying, it wouldn't surprise me. Because it's not something that's happening organically. You're forcing it. The individual, the male, is doing it as quickly — it's not like, you know — and so I can see why there is truth to that. It's unfortunate.”
Former vice president Mike Pence called for a national abortion ban.
“Now that Roe v. Wade has been consigned to the ash heap of history, a new arena in the cause of life has emerged and it is incumbent on all who cherish the sanctity of life to resolve that we will take the defense of the unborn......and support for women in crisis pregnancies to every state Capitol in America,” he tweeted. “Having been given this second chance for Life, we must not rest and must not relent until the sanctity of life is restored to the center of American law in every state in the land.”