Akin Touts Support From Anti-Abortion Activist Who Believes Women Rarely Get Pregnant From Rape
Rep. Todd Akin is heralding support from Dr. Jack Willke, even though the views Wilke espouses are the ones Akin is now saying he doesn’t accept.
Willke and his wife, Barbara, are leading antiabortion advocates. Their book, first published in 1971, asserts that “assault rape” rarely results in pregnancy because the assault traumatizes the woman and makes her body less habitable.
It’s “just downright unusual” for a woman to get pregnant from a rape, Willke said in an interview Monday.
“This goes back 30 and 40 years. When a woman is assaulted and raped, there’s a tremendous amount of emotional upset within her body,” Willke said, adding that this trauma “can radically upset her possibility of ovulation, fertilization, implantation and even nurturing of a pregnancy.”
It might also make a woman’s fallopian tubes “tight,” he said.
Willke estimated that there are just one or two pregnancies for every 1,000 rapes.
That contradicts research published in the Journal of American Obstetrics and Gynecology in the 1990s that found the occurrence of rape-related pregnancies is 5%. More than 32,000 women experience rape-related pregnancy every year, the research found.