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Thursday, January 16, 2014

Republicans’ latest awesome idea: have the IRS audit rape victims

ThinkProgress - House Republicans Are Pushing A Bill That Would Force The IRS To Audit Rape Victims
ThinkProgress: House Republicans are currently advancing the “No Taxpayer Funding For Abortion Act,” or HR 7, a measure that would impose sweeping restrictions on abortion coverage that could make the procedure less affordable for Americans across the country. In addition to preventing low-income women from using their Medicaid coverage to access abortion, HR 7 could also have dramatic implications for the tax code and the private insurance market. One of its most controversial provisions could actually require the Internal Revenue Service to conduct audits of rape victims.

Why? Because HR 7 eliminates medical-expense deductions for abortion care, essentially raising taxes on the women who opt to have an abortion. Like many abortion restrictions, this provision includes an exemption for victims of rape and incest, as well as women who encounter life-threatening complications from their pregnancies. But in order to enforce those exceptions, the IRS would have to verify that the women who are claiming a medical-expense deduction for an abortion fall into one of those three categories, to ensure they’re not committing tax fraud.

Essentially, that would empower the government agency to have the final say over what “count” as a sexual assault or a life-threatening situation. And that, in turn, would force victims to prove their case.
So if you have an abortion after a rape, you have to move heaven and earth to prove that you really were raped — including sitting through an IRS audit, which Republicans have basically argued is the worst thing ever.. But if you shoot someone on the street, you just have to say you were “standing your ground” and you don’t have to prove jack (although it helps if the bullet recipient isn’t white).

I’m not sure which is more disturbing, Republicans’ sick fascination with firearms or their sick fascination with rape. Either way, a lot of Republicans are seriously unhealthy people.

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