Friday, September 26th, 2014
CONTACT: Amy Runyon-Harms, Executive Director at [email protected]

DENVER: Responding to newly-reported comments from Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez about rape, incest and abortion, and just before the gubernatorial candidates take to the stage at Metro State University, ProgressNow Colorado, the state’s largest online progressive advocacy organization, hosted a press call Friday morning featuring an OB/GYN physician and a survivor of sexual assault to demand Beauprez apologize for his extreme and insensitive remarks.

To listen to a recording of today’s call, click here.

“Bob Beauprez’s casual dismissal of the real consequences of sexual assault, which includes unwanted pregnancy, is totally unacceptable,” said ProgressNow Colorado executive director Amy Runyon-Harms. “Like Todd Akin, Beauprez thinks that pregnancies resulting from rape or incest are ‘few in number.’ His statement is baseless and offensive to every woman who has ever been put in this horrible position.”

In an August 2006 radio interview on Colorado Public Radio, Beauprez responded to a question on whether he would support a law preventing a minor victim of rape from obtaining an abortion. Beauprez responded that he would support such a law, and claimed “The situations of rape or incest, and pregnancies resulting from, are relatively few.” [1]

“Beauprez’s statement that pregnancies resulting from rape or incest ‘are relatively few’ is both offensive and not backed up by medical science,” said Dr. Rebecca Cohen, OB/GYN, Family Planning Fellow. “In 2012, Congressman Todd Akin claimed similarly that ‘the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down’ in cases of rape. The truth is, women can become pregnant as a result of the crime of rape as much as any other type of sexual intercourse. To infer otherwise for any reason is offensive in the extreme and demeaning to rape victims.”

“It is time that we call rape what it is, an act of degradation and violence, perpetrated on the available,” said Emilie C. Ailts, a survivor of sexual assault. “For a gubernatorial candidate to make outrageously uneducated remarks about the outcomes of the act of rape is at least willfully ignorant and at most revealing of his basic belief that this variety of violence against women should somehow be glossed over and accepted as reasonable. A rape is life-altering and an indestructable wound in a man or a woman’s psyche and is a burden that needn’t be compounded by the blind ignorance and bias of a civilized society.”

“Like other conservatives this election season, Bob Beauprez is trying desperately to cover up his fringe record on women’s health and reproductive choice,” said Runyon-Harms of ProgressNow Colorado. “Beauprez claims he wouldn’t try to ban abortions as governor in 2014, but in his last run for governor he campaigned on doing just that. Women shouldn’t trust Bob Beauprez with our most basic freedoms–and it’s too big of a risk to put him in a position where he can carry out his backward agenda of forcing victims to have their rapists’ babies.”