Oklahoma Anti-Abortion Lawmaker Says Women Are Merely ‘Hosts’

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Representative Justin Humphrey. Photo: Oklahoma State Legislature

On Tuesday, the Oklahoma state legislature will hold a hearing on a bill that would require a woman seeking an abortion to first get written permission from her male sexual partner. In an interview, the Republican lawmaker who authored the bill explained that a woman’s body, well, simply isn’t her own. Instead, a woman’s body is merely a “host.”

The Intercept has a detailed report about the bill, known as HB 1441, as well as another bill that would block women from aborting fetuses with genetic anomalies, called HB 1559. In a surprising move (as Oklahoma has passed 20 strict abortion regulations since 2011), the latter failed to pass last Wednesday while the former was tabled without comment. However, by Thursday, both measures were put back on the House Public Health Committee’s agenda, with a vote slated for February 14.

In an interview with the Intercept, Representative Justin Humphrey explained why he decided to author HB 1441. His first intention with the bill, he said, was to ensure men would have to pay child support from the beginning. He also wanted to give men a say in the decision of whether a woman gets an abortion or not, because women tend to make these decisions with the mistaken with belief that their bodies are their own, he said.

Per the Intercept:

“I understand that they feel like that is their body,” he said of women. “I feel like it is a separate — what I call them is, is you’re a ‘host.’ And you know when you enter into a relationship you’re going to be that host and so, you know, if you pre-know that then take all precautions and don’t get pregnant,” he explained. “So that’s where I’m at. I’m like, hey, your body is your body and be responsible with it. But after you’re irresponsible then don’t claim, well, I can just go and do this with another body, when you’re the host and you invited that in.”
Oklahoma Anti-Abortion Lawmaker Says Women Are ‘Hosts’