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Rep. Mary Helen Roberts Co-Sponsors Bill That Would Outlaw All Forms of Marital Rape

House Bill 1108 would remove the spousal exemption from third-degree rape in Washington state.

Rep. Mary Helen Roberts (D-Lynnwood) is a co-sponsor of a bill that would outlaw all forms of marital rape in Washington.

As The Associated Press reports, House Bill 1108 would remove a spousal exemption that remains on the books for third-degree rape—rape in which no physical force was used. Since the 1970s, most other states have removed the exemption for all forms of rape, according to the AP.

Do you support the removal of all marital rape exemptions? Why or why not? Tell us in the comments section.

Rep. Roger Goodman (D-Kirkland) is a key sponsor of the bill. "There is no such thing as legitimate rape," Goodman told the AP, borrowing a now-infamous phrase from former U.S. Rep. Todd Akin. "We have to get rid of this marital rape exception and catch up with the rest of the country."

Roberts' 21st District includes Edmonds. Also co-sponsoring the bill is State Rep. Cindy Ryu (D-Shoreline) of the 32nd District.

Washington state ended its spousal exception for first- and second-degree rape in 1983.

The House held a public hearing on the bill earlier this week; Goodman, who represents the 45th Legislative District, told the AP he is confident the legislation will make it out of the House and Senate and end up on Gov. Jay Inslee's desk for final approval.

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