John Koster, a Republican running for Congress in Washington, became the latest candidate to opine on abortion exceptions in cases of rape and incest over the weekend at a fundraiser with Rep. Tom Price (R-GA). Koster said he would support abortion only if the woman’s life was in danger, but would not extend the same right to women who are survivors of incest or “the rape thing,” as he casually termed it. To justify his opposition, Koster insisted that incest is rare and argued that abortion would only further hurt rape survivors:
Incest is so rare, I mean, it’s so rare. But the rape thing…you know, I know a woman who was raped and kept her child, gave it up for adoption, she doesn’t regret it. In fact, she’s a big pro-life proponent. But on the rape thing, it’s like, how does putting more violence onto a woman’s body and taking the life of an innocent child that’s the consequence of this crime, how does that make it better? You know what I mean?
Koster’s comments are similar to those of Senate candidate Richard Mourdock (R-IN), who recently said that rape pregnancies are “a gift from God,” and Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO), who claimed women could not get pregnant from “legitimate rape.” In fact, Koster is very much in the Republican mainstream, as a growing number of Republican candidates call for tighter restrictions on the reproductive rights of rape victims.