In his latest fundraising email, Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) paints a very dark picture for the GOP if the party doesn’t win back the Senate in November.
“If we don’t take back the Senate, Dems will pack the courts, give DC statehood, grant abortions up to 52 weeks, and Republicans will never win again,” he wrote to supporters Monday.
Right now, Democrats control the Senate, House and the White House, and none of those things have happened. And it sure seems like Republicans have a great shot at winning back control of Congress in November. Structurally, the Senate map favors Republicans long-term, so the idea that the GOP will “never win again” is nonsense.
But even more head-scratching is the idea that Democrats will “grant abortions up to 52 weeks.”
“A full-term pregnancy is approximately 40 weeks,” Dr. Meera Shah, chief medical officer of Planned Parenthood Hudson Peconic, told HuffPost. “It is not logical or medically accurate to say that people can be pregnant at 52 weeks ― let alone be seeking an abortion. It is comments like this one that underscore exactly why medical decisions should not be made by politicians.”
It’s really not clear why Scott cited 52 weeks, and his office did not return a request for comment.
A number of Republicans have made claims about pregnancy and abortion that aren’t backed up by science, raising questions about whether they should really be the ones deciding what people do with their bodies. Virginia GOP congressional candidate Yesli Vega doubted whether women can get pregnant after being raped. (Wrong.) Arizona GOP gubernatorial candidate Karrin Taylor Robson, who recently lost her primary, also said it was “extremely rare.” (Wrong again.)
Some Republicans, including Scott, have pushed legislation that would protect babies born after a botched abortion. These measures, which could turn doctors into criminals, are unnecessary because, as Vox has explained, “a live birth after an abortion attempt is an extremely unlikely scenario” and “laws already exist to protect an infant in this instance anyway.”
But politically, bills such as the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act serve the political purpose of raising questions about whether Democrats support third-trimester abortions, a rare procedure and a very small percentage of abortions nationwide.
But even that legislation doesn’t mention anything about 52 weeks, and regardless, if a baby is 52 weeks old and out of the womb, an “abortion” doesn’t apply.