Wisconsin GOPer: "Some girls rape easy"

A Republican state representative defends his father's warning that premarital sex "may be rape the next morning"

Published October 11, 2012 1:31PM (EDT)

State Rep. Roger Rivard, R-Wis.  (Rivard For Assembly)
State Rep. Roger Rivard, R-Wis. (Rivard For Assembly)

Wisconsin state Rep. Roger Rivard is trying to defend himself for repeating his father's advice to him when he was younger, that "some girls rape easy."

Rivard, a Republican, had made the initial remarks in December to a local newspaper, when discussing a case where a 17-year-old high school student was charged with sexual assault by an underage girl. He said that his father had warned him that even if you think the sex is consensual, "Some girls rape easy."

The remarks have resurfaced during Rivard's reelection campaign, and so he explained himself to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel thusly:

"He told the Journal Sentinel that his father had advised him not to have premarital sex, and he took that seriously.

'He also told me one thing, "If you do (have premarital sex), just remember, consensual sex can turn into rape in an awful hurry,"' Rivard said. 'Because all of a sudden a young lady gets pregnant and the parents are madder than a wet hen and she's not going to say, "Oh, yeah, I was part of the program." All that she has to say or the parents have to say is it was rape because she's underage. And he just said, "Remember, Roger, if you go down that road, some girls," he said, "they rape so easy."

'What the whole genesis of it was, it was advice to me, telling me, "If you're going to go down that road, you may have consensual sex that night and then the next morning it may be rape." So the way he said it was, "Just remember, Roger, some girls, they rape so easy. It may be rape the next morning."'

'So it's been kind of taken out of context.'"

He later said in a statement: "Sexual assault is a crime that unfortunately is misunderstood and my comments have the potential to be misunderstood as well. Rape is a horrible act of violence. Sexual assault unfortunately often goes unreported to police. I have four daughters and three granddaughters and I understand the importance of making sure that awareness of this crime is taken very seriously."

By Jillian Rayfield

Jillian Rayfield is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on politics. Follow her on Twitter at @jillrayfield or email her at jrayfield@salon.com.

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Rape Republicans Roger Rivard Sex Wisconsin