According to the The Huffington Post, Tennessee Rep. Scott DesJarlais had an affair with a patient in 2000 while he was married. DesJarlais, a doctor, pressured the woman to have an abortion.
On DesJarlais’ website, he presents a one-line statement for his current position on abortion:
All life should be cherished and protected. We are pro-life.
Unless your mistress gets pregnant, then abortions are acceptable.
Most of the hypocrites in situations like these have excuses for inconvenient facts like this. DesJarlais does too. It’s the fault of his opponents for bringing up old news.
When DesJarlais was presented the transcript of a phone call between him and his mistress revealing her pregnancy and the planned abortion, this was his response:
“Desperate personal attacks do not solve our nation’s problems, yet it appears my opponents are choosing to once again engage in the same gutter politics that CBS news called the dirtiest in the nation just 2 years ago.”
DesJarlais did not deny the allegations. Instead of owning up and accepting responsibility, or claiming that his views on abortion have changed over the last decade, DesJarlais took the less noble road. His political opponents are to blame for him having to explain that he believes in abortions for himself but not anyone else.
Here is part of the transcripts from HuffPost:
“You told me you’d have an abortion, and now we’re getting too far along without one,” DesJarlais tells the woman at one point in the call while negotiating with her over whether he’ll reveal her identity to his wife.
“You told me you would have time to go with me and everything,” the woman complains.
They finally agree to go together, but the tension continues. The best part is here, where DesJarlais suggests that he is the real victim for sleeping with his patient because she lied about birth control.
“This is not fair to me. I don’t want you in my life,” the woman says.
“Well, I didn’t want to be in your life either, but you lied to me about something that caused us to be in this situation, and that’s not my fault, that’s yours,” the doctor responds.
“Well, it’s [your] fault for sleeping with your patient,” the woman fires back.
DesJarlais’ marriage, which collapsed shortly after this, was raised in the 2010 election that put DesJarlais in Congress. However, these are new allegations with details that add a new dimension. Whether DesJarlais will pay at the polls is questionable. He won in 2010 with a 20% margin.