The Massachusetts Democratic Party released a hard-hitting mailer against Republican Senate candidate Scott Brown, Greg Sargent reported over the weekend, accusing Brown of wanting the state's hospitals to turn away all of the 1,736 Massachusetts women who were raped in 2008.
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"1,736 WOMEN WERE RAPED IN MASSACHUSETTS IN 2008," the mailer said (all capital letters in the original). "SCOTT BROWN WANTS HOSPITALS TO TURN THEM ALL AWAY."
The ad is an extension of a a Coakley TV ad from last week, which attacked Brown for having backed proposed legislation in the state Senate to allow hospitals or hospital personnel to refuse to dispense emergency contraception to rape victims. That ad was also particularly brutal, with the visual of a woman cowering with her head in her hands, presumably meant to signify that the woman was a rape victim being harmed even further by Brown's policies.
So is the claim true, or not? The short answer is that Brown did not want hospitals to turn away rape victims en masse, refusing to provide any and all care. He did want to guarantee them the legal ability to refuse to provide emergency contraception. This was presented accurately in the Coakley TV ad, but is being seriously twisted around in this state Dem mailer.