DCCC HR3 Petition Screencap

Screenshot of the hypocritcal DCCC petition against GOP and HR3

HR3 – “The No Taxpayer Money for Abortion Act” – is a vile piece of legislation by its title alone. That the bill contained, until yesterday, a provision to redefine rape as “forcible” rape was even more insidious.

Sady Doyle, who’s led the anti-HR3 campaign at her phenomenal blog Tiger Beatdown, explained what HR3 meant:

The bill seeks to codify the Hyde Amendment, which already restricts public funding for abortion so severely as to make it basically useless for the vast majority of low-income people, and to pass this into law. However, UNLIKE the Hyde Amendment, it doesn’t observe the long-standing truce between anti-choice extremists and rape survivors: Instead of holding forth, as even the rightfully-loathed Hyde Amendment and Stupak-Pitts Amendment have, that funding shall be made available for pregnant rape and incest survivors, it would only provide funding for survivors who have been “forcibly raped.”

It is absolutely unacceptable for the government to minimize rape and attack rape survivors this way. It’s disgusting. It’s unconscionable. It’s not just about abortion; it is passing rape apologism and rape culture into law. We’re all familiar with the attitude that rape only “really” counts if someone jumps out of the bushes with a weapon and physically tortures, beats, or maims you in addition to raping you; that’s a big part of what this clause is about. This sets a terrifying precedent that takes us back to the days when the law wouldn’t define your rape as a rape unless you’d demonstrated “utmost resistance,” meaning that you’d risked your life to get into a physical fight with someone who already wanted to rape you, and wouldn’t have a problem with hurting you really, really severely to get that done. We cannot let this stand. It’s not something on which there can be any compromise, ever, at any time.

In a Republican-controlled House, it’s not shocking to see this kind of medieval treatment of women become a priority over, you know, job creation. But let’s focus on the Democrats involved in this travesty. Of HR3’s 173 co-sponsors in the House, 10 identify themselves as Democrats. They were elected with a “D” next to their names, and even though most did not vote for Pelosi, they’re still in the party.

That’s why it’s completely unacceptable for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) – the party apparatus whose sole purpose is to help elect Democrats to the House – to grandstand against HR3’s redefinition of rape with petitions blaming “the GOP for their bill.” The DCCC is currently running at least two petitions against the “Republicans'” bill, asking people to “denounce Republican Speaker John Boehner and House Republicans for supporting this extremist anti-woman bill.”

What about the House Democrats – supported by the DCCC – who are supporting this extremist anti-woman bill?

A look at the DCCC’s contributions to and on behalf of the 10 Democratic co-sponsors of HR3 show the committee spent a whopping $3,379,322.85 to keep these members in office – in 2010 alone. The list includes: Dan Boren [OK-2], Jerry Costello [IL-12], Mark Critz [PA-12], Joe Donnelly [IN-2], Daniel Lipinski [IL-3], Collin Peterson [MN-7], Nick Rahall [WV-3], Mike Ross [AR-4], and Heath Shuler [NC-11]. And God knows how many Blue Dogs that lost in 2010 and who were supported by the DCCC would have co-sponsored this bill.

Here’s a look at who the DCCC’s favorite rape-redefining Democrats are, and what the price tag is to keep people around the party who want to redefine rape. The numbers below are 2010 election cycle expenditures and donations in the members’ districts by the DCCC, as compiled by the Sunlight Foundation Reporting Group. Major, major props to Sady Doyle for pointing out this hypocrisy.

Rep District DCCC IEs DCCC Contributions Totals
$3,371,959.85 $7,363.00 $3,379,322.85
Mark Critz PA-12 $2,099,861.86 $7,341.00 $2,107,202.86
Joe Donnelly IN-02 $770,760.74 $0.00 $770,760.74
Mike McIntyre NC-07 $270,224.62 $22.00 $270,246.62
Heath Shuler NC-11 $231,112.63 $0.00 $231,112.63
Collin Peterson MN-07 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
Dan Boren OK-02 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
Daniel Lipinski IL-03 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
Jerry Costello IL-12 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
Mike Ross AR-04 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
Nick Rahall WV-03 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00

The DCCC should not say a word about Republicans and HR3 until it denounces its own members who support the same.

Michael Whitney

Michael Whitney

My name is Michael Whitney. I'm a progressive online organizer working with FDL Action. Rush Limbaugh called me "clueless" once. He went into rehab two days later.