Republican Congressman Insults Breast Cancer Survivors

According to recent reports, US Representative John Hostettler (R-IN) focused on controversial studies linking breast cancer and abortion rather than discussing current legislation during the Congressman’s annual advocacy meeting with breast cancer survivors. The 11 women who attended the meeting were reportedly offended and “extremely disappointed,” according to Carol Cochran, a grandmother and two-time survivor of breast cancer. Jean Ellis, a 68-year-old breast cancer survivor told the Evansville Courier & Press: “The impression was that he was suggesting we all had an abortion. It was insulting.”

Hostettler had mailed copies of studies suggesting that there is a link between breast cancer and abortion to Cochran before the meeting, so she brought with her studies from the National Institutes of Health’s National Cancer Institute, the American Cancer Society, and the National Breast Cancer Coalition, which all conclude that there is no link between abortion and breast cancer. Hostettler’s reaction to these studies was that the National Cancer Institute “is just one organization,” according to the Evansville Courier & Press.

In response to reports that the women attending the meeting were upset and offended, Hostettler remarked: “I can’t control what people feel. I can only control what I say,” according to the Associated Press.


Evansville Courier & Press 8/16/02; Associated Press 8/17/02

Support eh ERA banner