The Maine Democratic Party recently sent campaign mailers that reignited a controversy caused by state Rep. Lawrence Lockman’s (R) statements comparing abortion and rape.
“If a woman has the right to abortion, why shouldn’t a man be free to use his superior strength to force himself on a woman?” Lockman said. “At least the rapist’s pursuit of sexual freedom doesn’t in most cases result in anyone’s death.”
Lockman hasn’t held elected office in Maine for very long—he was first elected in 2012—but he has a long history of making comments like the one printed in the Democratic mailers.
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Maine political reporter Michael Tipping this year compiled a list of some of Lockman’s comments, ranging from opining on the spread of HIV to protesting the IRS.
Lockman, in a 1987 letter to the editor of a local paper, wrote about the spread of AIDS, saying, “In the overwhelming majority of cases, people are dying because of their addiction to sodomy. They are dying because progressive, enlightened, tolerant people in politics and in medicine have assured the public that the practice of sodomy is a legitimate alternative lifestyle, rather than a perverted, depraved crime against humanity.”
Lockman doubled down in 1990, saying that “the practice of sodomy is learned behavior, and those addicted to this form of biologically-insane sex are at high risk for all manner of serious medical problems.”
Almost a decade earlier, Lockman founded a group called the Maine Patriots, which espoused the belief that taxes are voluntary and that the IRS is unconstitutional. A federal tax court in 1983 found that Lockman owed more than $17,000 in unpaid taxes.
The Maine Democratic Party called for Lockman to resign after his recent rape comments were made public. Lockman refused to step down and has never issued an apology for his statements, though he did say that he regrets the comments he made.