Infamous Doctor Seeks to Head Arkansas Health Department
A doctor in Arkansas who lost his bid for the U.S. Senate after he remarked that women are not likely to become pregnant through rape is pursuing a job as head of the Arkansas Health Department.
Republican Fay Boozman, a 52 year-old eye doctor, received a call from Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee's office asking him to join the selection committee in search of a new state health director. Boozman declined joining the committee, saying that he planned to run for the position himself.
Boozman, who is anti-choice, said that women who have been raped were unlikely to get pregnant, and thus would not need access to abortion. Boozman claimed that if a woman is raped, she will become frightened, causing her body to release a hormone that would prevent conception from occuring. Boozman called this unnamed hormone "God's little protective shield."
Boozman's remark, made during his Senate race was widely criticized by doctors, who said it held no scientific truth. Boozman apologized after the public and scientific community reacted negatively to what he said, but continues to stand by his hypothesis.
Boozman is among several candidates being evaluated for the job. He will receive a second interview with the health department, although many critics have claimed that he is unqualified for the position.
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .