Porter Defends Heartbeat Bill: ‘You Can Still Technically Have An Abortion’

At an event for college students hosted by the late Phyllis Schlafly’s Eagle Forum yesterday, anti-choice advocate Janet Porter defended the federal version of her “Heartbeat Bill” from claims that, if passed, it would make it nearly impossible for women who are the victims of sexual assault to safely get abortions.

Porter’s bill, which was introduced in Congress earlier this year by Rep. Steve King, would ban abortions from the moment a fetal heartbeat can be detected, which can happen as early as six weeks into a pregnancy, before many women even know that they are pregnant. Porter argued that her bill is actually “pro-woman” because it “takes from” pro-choice activists “their strongest arguments, because you can still technically have an abortion if you’re raped, or a victim of incest, or for any other reason.”

Porter insisted that victims of rape will “know if they were raped” and can therefore get treated quickly with emergency contraception, which will “ideally … prevent the conception of the child” in the first place and avoid the need to obtain an abortion within the short window that would exist under her proposed legislation.

Perhaps realizing that promoting the use of emergency contraception, which many anti-choice activists oppose because they believe it to be an abortifacient, Porter qualified her argument by asserting that she would never condone abortion, even in the instance of rape, regardless of what the bill allows: “We’re not for killing any child, especially an innocent child for the crime of his father.”

In the past, Porter has repeatedly said that she hopes that her bill will eventually lead to the criminalization of all abortions.