An ultra-conservative Republican congressman has a staunch record of opposing abortion rights for almost all women — except his own mistress.
Rep. Tim Murphy, the ultra-conservative so-called "family values" Republican from Pennsylvania, has never met a restriction on women's health care he didn't fervently support, including a vote in the House on Tuesday to ban abortion after 20 weeks. Murphy is a co-sponsor of that bill.
But apparently, there is one exception to Murphy's otherwise zero tolerance for abortion: his own mistress.
"And you have zero issue posting your pro-life stance all over the place when you had no issue asking me to abort our unborn child just last week when we thought that was one of the options," Shannon Edwards, a forensic psychologist in Pittsburgh with whom the congressman admitted last month to having a relationship, wrote to Mr. Murphy on Jan. 25, in the midst of an unfounded pregnancy scare.
According to the Post-Gazette's report, Murphy sent back a text message saying, "I get what you say about my March for life messages. I've never written them. Staff does them. I read them and winced. I told staff don't write any more. I will."
Privately blaming his staff for his public opposition to abortion is quite an absurd move for the congressman. His own voting record shows vote after vote after vote after vote against not only access to abortion, but access to all reproductive health care.
Murphy is so extreme that he even co-sponsored bills to extend 14th Amendment protections to embryos. That's why he has received the support of radical anti-abortion groups, like the Family Research Council, the National Right to Life Committee, and LifePAC. He is also a member of the so-called "House Pro-Life Caucus."
While Murphy has made a public career out of his supposed "family values," in his own personal life, he's revealed himself to be guilty of the very behaviors he attacks and demonizes.
Shockingly, Murphy is not even the first anti-abortion member of Congress to encourage his mistress to have an abortion. Tennessee Republican Scott DesJarlais was exposed in 2012 for also encouraging multiple women to have abortions, despite his own extremist anti-health care voting record in the House.
DesJarlais is also a sponsor of Tuesday's House bill to ban abortion at 20 weeks — even though nearly 99 percent of abortions in the United States occur before then.
“The agenda behind this bill is clear: to shame women and to ban safe, legal abortion," said Dana Singiser, vice president for Government Relations and Public Policy, Planned Parenthood Federation of America. "If the last few months have shown us anything, it’s that Americans want policymakers working to improve health care access and rights for women, not take them away.”
That two members of Congress who have personally encouraged women they know to have abortions, while actively seeking to deny that right to millions of others, shows just how craven and cruel their agenda really is. And clearly, given their support for abortion rights in their personal lives, they do not even believe their own rhetoric.