Rape Victim Offended by Illinois Governor’s Politicization of Sexual Assaults

Chicago—On Thursday, November 17, Personal PAC will present their “Pro-Choice Leadership Award” to Jennie Goodman for her role in helping to get pro-choice Governor Pat Quinn elected last year. Goodman, a victim of rape at age 18, was featured in an ad in which she attacked the pro-life position of Quinn’s challenger, Bill Brady.

The pro-choice award will be presented by Quinn himself, for which he has been sharply criticized by the Catholic bishops of Illinois. Quinn is a professed Catholic, and his presentation of this award, in the words of Cardinal Francis George, “crosses the line.” 

While Goodman has used the story of her rape—from which she did not become pregnant—to promote a pro-abortion political agenda, another victim of rape has a very different story to tell.

At 11:30 a.m., a rape-victim who did become pregnant, Mary Higgins, will be outside the Chicago Hilton and Towers location to protest Goodman’s audacity in speaking about what she has not experienced. Higgins, a board member of the Pro-Life Action League, will be supported by other leaders from the League. The goal is to underscore Higgins’ message about the most overlooked victims of rape: innocent babies conceived through this violent act.

Mary Higgins is one of many other victims of rape and hopes that her press conference will put a face on the other innocent victims of rape. When Mary was sexually assaulted at age 18, she was faced with the choice that Jennie Goodman never had to make: what to do when she discovered that she had become pregnant with her rapist’s child.

As difficult as her situation was, Mary refused to punish her unborn child for its father’s crime. Mary chose life for her unborn daughter, and placed her for adoption. She says, “It was the best choice I ever made.”

Mary is offended that Goodman would use the story of her rape to defend aborting children like her daughter, children conceived in rape.

“Jennie Goodman defends her pro-choice position by remarking that she never had a choice about becoming a victim of rape,” Higgins says, responding to Goodman’s remarks in the media. “But she is forgetting about all the unborn children who never have any choice about becoming victims of abortion.”

Higgins and her now-grown daughter celebrate the life that came out of a horrible and traumatic experience for Mary, who has a beautiful, close relationship with the child who was conceived in that abusive and criminal act.

Eric Scheidler, director of the Pro-Life Action League, supports Mary in her efforts to share the truth about rape and the children that result from it. According to Scheidler, “Those who believe that abortion is the answer for victims of rape have not asked the victims themselves. No child deserves to be given a death sentence for his or her father’s crime.” 

In support of this position, Scheidler will be passing out copies of a new brochure from the League (download the PDF at prolifeaction.org/docs/RapeAbortion.pdf), which shows that most rape victims who become pregnant do not abort their children, while the vast majority of those who do regret it. 

Details of Press Conference

  • Mary Higgins will take up a solemn post outside the Chicago Hilton and Towers at 11:30 a.m. on November 17 and will take questions from the press.
  • The Pro-Life Action League will be present to support Higgins in protest; director Eric Scheidler will be available for interviews.
  • Following Higgins’ press conference outside, the Personal PAC luncheon will take place inside the building, where Goodman will be recognized for using her rape in promoting pro-choice politics.
  • Copies of the League’s “Abortion for Victims of Rape and Incest?” brochure will be distributed to the public. You can download the PDF here.
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