In voting to criminalize abortion by making anyone providing the procedure guilty of a felony, the South Dakota state legislature in a 54-14 vote last week firmly rejected any exception for rape or incest.
"Rape and incest are truly traumatic, horrible crimes," said Representative Keri Weems. "The result is not a crime. The baby is not a crime. The baby has the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."
Weems added, "A woman who has been raped has been cruelly victimized. If she ends up pregnant, is it fair to her? No. It wasn't fair to be raped, and it's not fair to be pregnant. Then, do we kill her child? Will that make things fair? No."
Additional reporting: Ashley Glacel and Alicia Ng
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss Village Voice's biggest stories.