A new bill introduced by Mississippi GOP Rep. Lester “Bubba” Carpenter (District 1) would require women in the state who are arrested under the Controlled Substances Law to submit to drug testing. A positive test would result in her being charged with child abuse, punishable by ten years to life.
Under HB 202, state law regarding felonious child abuse would be altered to include the bolded text below:
“Any person who shall intentionally (i) burn any child, (ii) torture any child***, (iii) except in self-defense or in order to prevent bodily harm to a third party, whip, strike or otherwise abuse or mutilate any child in such a manner as to cause serious bodily harm, or (iv) test positive for a controlled substance while pregnant as provided by Section 1 of House Bill No. , 2013 Regular Session, shall be guilty of felonious abuse of a child and, upon conviction, shall be sentenced to imprisonment in the custy of the Department of Corrections for life or such lesser term of imprisonment as the court may determine, but not less than ten (10) years.”
A pregnant woman found with a little THC in her system could be sentenced to a minimum of 10 years in prison. A fetus would be officially recognized as a child by the law and protected under child abuse laws. Being a pregnant woman would make you a target for automatic drug testing.
Bubba Carpenter was featured on the Rachel Maddow Show after a video was leaked of him bragging about having helped passed a law intended to shut down the last abortion clinic in Mississippi. In the video, he mocked “poor pitiful women” who would be forced to use coat hangers for abortions:
“Literally, we stopped abortion in the state of Mississippi, legally…So we’ve done that. I was proud of it. The governor signed it into law. And of course, there you have the other side. They’re like, ‘Well, the poor pitiful women that can’t afford to go out of state are just going to start doing them at home with a coat hanger.’ That’s what we’ve heard over and over and over. But hey, you have to have moral values. You have to start somewhere, and that’s what we’ve decided to do. This became law and the governor signed it, and I think for one time, we were first in the nation in the state of Mississippi.”