Female Ohio lawmaker says rape can be 'opportunity'

Mean Jean strikes again: Ohio lawmaker Jean Schmidt, 70, claims rape can be an ‘opportunity’ for teenage victims to become good mothers as she argues to ban abortion

  • Jean Schmidt was arguing in favor of Ohio’s Human Life Protection Act when she made the comments on Wednesday 
  • The bill would ban abortions entirely in Ohio if Roe vs Wade is overturned 
  • Schmidt was confronted with the scenario of young girls being impregnated via rape or incest rape
  • She replied to say that it would be an ‘opportunity for that woman no matter how young or old she is’ 
  • ‘What she’s going to do to help that life be a productive human being,’ she said
  • Schmidt was slammed by pro-choice activists and others who said she was a ‘rape apologist’ 
  • In 2005, Schmidt called a Democratic Vietnam combat veteran a ‘coward’ 
  • It won her the nickname ‘Mean Jean’  

The controversial Ohio lawmaker Jean Schmidt, known as Mean Jean for inflammatory past remarks, has sparked outrage again by claiming rape can be an ‘opportunity’ for young victims to become good mothers. 

Republican Rep. Jean Schmidt, 70, made the remarks on Wednesday during a hearing on House Bill 598, also known as the ‘Human Life Protection Act’ which would ban abortion. The bill makes no exceptions for victims of rape or incest. 

Schmidt, when confronted with those two scenarios, said: ‘It is a shame that it happens, but there’s an opportunity for that woman, no matter how young or old she is, to make a determination about what she’s going to do to help that life be a productive human being.’

She has been slammed online by pro-choice activists and others who called her a ‘rape apologist’. 

Schmidt is no stranger to controversy. 

In 2005, she labeled Vietnam war veteran John P. Murtha a coward after he called for a withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan. 

Schmidt, a newcomer at the time, claimed to have received a phone call from a Marine colonel who wanted to deliver a message to Murtha. 

‘[He] asked me to send Congressman Murtha a message: that cowards cut and run, Marines never do,’ she said. It sent the house into uproar and Schmidt asked for her remarks to be stricken from the congressional record. 

The following year, she was accused of listing fake endorsements on her campaign website after some of the people who she claimed supported her spoke out to say they didn’t. 

In 2016, she was fined by the FEC for accepting free legal services from the Turkish Coalition of America. The Commission found that she was in breach of campaign ethics rules when she took $600,000 in free legal services from the organization. 

She was slammed for her rape comments by some who called her a ‘rape apologist’. 

They asked how she would feel if someone in her family was raped. 

Schmidt is married to financial adviser Peter Schmidt. The pair have one adult daughter, Emily. 

Schmidt with her husband, daughter Emily, son-in-law and grandsons 

Schmidt is a proud Republican who says she was inspired by Richard Nixon. She is shown with George Bush 

The lawmaker tells in her biography how she grew up Democratic then changed her political tune after becoming a fan of President Nixon. She is a proud anti-abortionist and is championing the anti-abortion bill in Ohio. 

STATES WITH ABORTION BAN LAWS

Florida

Oklahoma

Texas

Mississippi 

Kentucky 

The laws vary but largely restrict abortions after 15 weeks, making few exceptions. 

Texas bans abortions after a heartbeat can be detected in the embryo – something that happens at around six weeks. 

‘The time has come for Ohio to truly stand up for the rights of the unborn,” Schmidt said during a Wednesday committee meeting.

‘I pray to God every single night and every single morning that we end this carnage of killing innocent lives because I am pro-life.’ 

The issue of Roe v Wade and abortion across America has resurfaced thanks to an ongoing case before the Supreme Court concerning Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban. 

If the Supreme Court rules in favor of the Mississippi law, it essentially undoes the national right to abortion afforded by Roe v Wade, opening other states up to make their own rules on abortion including banning it entirely. 

Ohio’s law, proposed by Schmidt, would be among the strictest by not allowing for abortions in rape and incest cases. 

Texas and Oklahoma have also passed restrictive laws that would ban abortion in many cases and would criminalize doctors who perform them.

Oklahoma’s rule bans all abortions unless they are deemed medically necessary. 

Last year, Texas introduced the ‘Heartbeat Act’ which bans abortions in pregnancies where a embryonic heartbeat can be detected – something that occurs at around six weeks in pregnancy. 

Florida recently introduced its own 15-week abortion ban except in cases where pregnancy would harm the mother or baby medically.  

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