Religious liberty expands to include all employers, and all women, and all contraceptive coverage

Religious liberty is expanding very quickly. I don’t even know if I can keep up.

We’ve gone from religious-affiliated entities (yesterday) to all businesses (today):

That means removing the provision from the health care law altogether, he said, not simply changing it for Catholic employers and their insurers. He cited the problem that would create for “good Catholic business people who can’t in good conscience cooperate with this.”
“If I quit this job and opened a Taco Bell, I’d be covered by the mandate,” Picarello said.

Now we’re just stripping out contraceptives completely, co-pay or no co-pay:

A new bill introduced by Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), a rising conservative star and leading contender for the Republican vice-presidential nomination in 2012, could cut off birth control coverage for millions of women who receive it through their health plans.
Rubio has sold his proposal—introduced Jan. 31 as the “Religious Freedom Restoration Act,” or S. 2043—as a way to counter President Barack Obama’s controversial rule requiring even religiously affiliated schools and universities to offer copay-free birth control to their employees. But health care experts say that its implications could be far broader.
If passed, the bill would allow any institution or corporation to cut off birth control coverage simply by citing religious grounds. It has 26 cosponsors in the Senate; a similar proposal sponsored by Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-Neb.) has 148 cosponsors in the House. On Wednesday, Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio) vowed to repeal Obama’s rule, and Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.)pointed to Rubio’s bill as a potential model for doing so.
In English, this means that no entity has to cover birth control in a health plan if it can point to a religious reason for not doing so. And the entity itself is not required to have any religious affiliation. It could just be a plain old corporation. That means that if the middle-aged white guy who runs your company is religiously opposed to birth control, he can have it stripped out of your insurance plan—even if his Viagra is still covered. You could wake up the next morning and find you’re paying full price for drugs that you once got for free or at much-reduced prices.
“This could be huge,” says Judy Waxman, the vice president for health and reproductive rights at the National Women’s Law Center. “It’s clearly more than a million women who’d be affected if it were just hospitals and universities [that were affected], but under the Rubio bill it could be any employer. It could be millions.”

I don’t even know what to say. Obama is busy standardizing health insurance coverage for all, and conservatives are busy taking coverage from the women who have health insurance, or might ever have health insurance, sometime, in the distant future:

Obama’s health care bill included a massive expansion of Medicaid, but Rubio’s bill could allow governors who are opposed to birth control to deny it to Medicaid patients who were added to the program under Obama’s bill. All state Medicaid plans currently cover family planning, although the state is allowed to decide what that means. The Rubio bill would override that.

For years, liberals have been claiming that conservatives were ultimately targeting birth control, and conservatives always denied it. Marco Rubio has now all but announced that they are, in fact, targeting birth control.

Some enterprising journalist really, really needs to look into how this “firestorm” started, and what it’s really about, because it’s spreading very quickly.

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154 replies
  1. 1
    James K. Polk, Esq. says:

    Fuck this.

    I can’t, “can’t in good conscience cooperate with” murdering people from Terminator-style robotic planes and my taxes go to support that.

    Where’s my religious exemption?

  2. 2
    dmsilev says:

    The existence of conservatives is an affront to my religion. I demand that Congress rectify this.

  3. 3
    beltane says:

    What type of contraception does Mrs. Rubio use and who pays for it?

  4. 4
    shortstop says:

    Apparently Rubio felt that Komen was totes lollygagging on bringing itself down. He’s out to prove he can destroy a once-promising brand (his own) in far less than seven days.

  5. 5
    Valdivia says:

    I really have no words. Also. Isn’t this in Griswold territory?

  6. 6
    Cat Lady says:

    Do they realize that men like birth control too? And that they’re being played like a violin by Obama, once again, who most likely anticipated that the Goopers, once again, wouldn’t be able to help themselves and show their ass? Way to alienate everyone not you, fucktards.

  7. 7

    There goes Rubio’s VP slot. Unless it’s on Santorum’s ticket anyhow.

  8. 8
    JC says:

    This is, frankly, insane.

    Birth control is being responsible.
    Birth control is having a say in one’s health.
    Birth control insures that there ARE no unwanted pregnancies.

    ‘Freedom’ is for the individual to have access to birth control. An employer can’t pick and choose what they cover, for their employees. it’s the employees decision – a personal decision.

    Viagra is covered, for god’s sake.

    this is total, complete, unmitigated lunacy.

    And they pretend it’s about freedom??

    Push back, hard, hard, hard, hard, hard, unrelenting.

    This shall not pass.

    This is Terry Schiavo all over again – these people are off the rails.

  9. 9
    kay says:

    @beltane:

    and who pays for it?

    Since when do employers “pay for” health insurance?

    I can’t believe that conservatives have been able to redefine employer-provided health insurance as a gift.

  10. 10
    beltane says:

    @dmsilev: The teachings of most churches in the US constitutes blasphemy according to my beliefs. I demand that these heretics be stripped of their tax-exempt status.

    Also, EMT workers should not be required to save the lives of members of other faiths. They are going to hell anyway so no sense in prolonging the inevitable.

  11. 11
    matryoshka says:

    According to Wikipedia, the Rubio family only has 4 children. How can that be? He’s been married since 1997.

  12. 12
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    These morans were told not to go here, and they’re doing it.

    “Please don’t push me into the brier patch! Please!”

  13. 13
    Quaker in a Basement says:

    So what we have here is a stealth effort to rip the guts out of ACA under the guise of “religious freedom.” Is that what I’m reading here?

  14. 14
    burnspbesq says:

    One thing we know for certain is that Rubio’s staff are idiots. There’s already a Religious Freedom Restoration Act. It was passed in 1993, and is codified at 42 U.S.C. section 2000bb et seq.

    If Reid has a lick of sense, there will never be a floor vote on this piece of junk.

  15. 15
    kay says:

    @Cat Lady:

    Do they realize that men like birth control too?

    Not just “like”. Have an absolute vital interest in, because they’d be the daddy.

    I’m flabbergasted. I expected them to go after Medicaid, but now we’re well into the interests of the pundit class, w/this.

  16. 16
    Hunter Gathers says:

    @beltane:

    What type of contraception does Mrs. Rubio use and who pays for it?

    I’m fairly certain that Marco spends too much time looking into the mirror humming ‘Hail to the chief’ while softly rubbing his nipples for Mrs. Rubio to have to worry about that.

  17. 17

    The way the Republicans are falling all over themselves to throw a First Amendment monkey wrench into the ACA, you’d think they had lost faith in the individual mandate challenge before the Supreme Court.

  18. 18
    Steeplejack says:

    I wonder when someone (pundit) will connect the dots that this is another compelling argument for universal health care. “Your church/business ‘doesn’t feel comfortable’ offering contraception as part of its health plan? Fine. With universal health care you’re out of the loop and that problem goes away. So can we put you down as being in favor of that now?”

  19. 19
    Suffern ACE says:

    What they want to do is get rid of those pesky state laws that say they have to offer things. By the end of the week,expect “family planning” to include pre-natal care for single women.

    One of the posters over at Kos last night noted that even though it was technically against the law in GA, the Catholic healthcare business she worked for was never brought to task for not covering birth control (OR PRENATAL CARE!).

    I’m guessing that they sense this is a winning wedge for them among middle clas Catholic men. And of course, businessmen.

  20. 20
    Dave says:

    Kay is the best, most focused, most informative, most politically astute writer here. A thousand kudos.

  21. 21
    Comrade Dread says:

    I’m going to go out on a limb, be a bit conspiratorial, and say it’s no longer just about contraception.

    Birth control will be just the first shot.

    The ultimate goal will be to eliminate as many regulations as possible in the employment realm, so that employers can have the freedom to offer whatever pay, benefits, workplace conditions, and services they want, and if you don’t like it, you can go pound sand, since they’re also pushing the right to work laws.

  22. 22
    JC says:

    Why is my comment above in moderation? (feel free to delete this)

  23. 23
    dmbeaster says:

    My religion is Randian, which teaches that I dont have to give a fuck about anyone, so I get a pass on having to provide any health services. Why stop at contraception?

  24. 24
    melchie says:

    “religious freedom” = “freedom to discriminate against women”

  25. 25
    Valdivia says:

    @Dave:

    co-sign this. She is. I am a total fan-girl.

  26. 26
    Linnaeus says:

    All state Medicaid plans currently cover family planning, although the state is allowed to decide what that means. The Rubio bill would override that.

    Love that conservatarian concern for local government and states’ rights!

  27. 27
    Linnaeus says:

    @Comrade Dread:

    The ultimate goal will be to eliminate as many regulations as possible in the employment realm, so that employers can have the freedom to offer whatever pay, benefits, workplace conditions, and services they want, and if you don’t like it, you can go pound sand, since they’re also pushing the right to work laws.

    Yep. Welcome to the dream of neofeudalism.

  28. 28
    beltane says:

    @Cat Lady: Conservative men appear to be woefully ignorant of the workings of lady-parts. Maybe they think babies really do come from cabbage patches.

    This is why I always insist on using proper clinical terminology when discussing sex with my sons. Reproduction should never be cloaked in terms of mystery and woo. In this spirit I will now refer to Marco Rubio as being a genital wart on the vulva of humanity.

  29. 29
    shortstop says:

    @beltane: More to the point, what kind of birth control does Amber Stoner use?

  30. 30
    Mike G says:

    @kay:

    I can’t believe that conservatives have been able to redefine employer-provided health insurance as a gift.

    With their ‘job creators’ rhetoric, Repukes seek to define all jobs as acts of benevolent generosity on the part of the rich, for which we should shower them with favors. Because the rest of us are just cringing, unworthy peasants.

  31. 31
    Emma says:

    Speaking as a Cuban-American female, I think Mr.Rubio just stepped on his own peepee with golf shoes on. Cuban-American women routinely use birth control, if those in my family are anything to go by. Some even use it for non-birth control reasons. For a working-class woman whose family is barely making ends meet, the extra cash per month she would have from getting them from her insurance provider would make a difference.

  32. 32
    beltane says:

    @Linnaeus: The Catholic Church was in the vanguard of upholding paleo-feudalism until the bitter end so it is not surprising to see them at the forefront of the movement to bring about a new feudal age.

  33. 33
    shortstop says:

    @beltane: Could he please be a genital wart on the penis of humanity? Vulvas are taking enough hits right now.

  34. 34
    rea says:

    Once you accept the principle that religious coviction trumps facially-neutral regulatory laws of general application, how do you conclude that, say, hijacking an airliner and crashing it into a building for relgious reasons is illegal?

  35. 35
    Brachiator says:

    I don’t even know what to say. Obama is busy standardizing health insurance coverage for all, and conservatives are busy taking coverage from the women who have health insurance, or might ever have health insurance, sometime, in the distant future

    This is getting to be fun. The Republicans clearly don’t consider birth control to be related to health care. It is a matter of religious faith, personal liberty and self control.

    Voters have a clear choice on how they want society to look.

    @Comrade Dread:

    I’m going to go out on a limb, be a bit conspiratorial, and say it’s no longer just about contraception. Birth control will be just the first shot.

    Conservatives have been going after birth control for a while, along with abortion.

    They hate Griswold v. Connecticut. States’ rights, blah, blah, blah.

  36. 36
    General Stuck says:

    Just wait till they call for regular human sacrifice of liberal virgins under religious liberty. It would be just like the wingnuts to propose a solution for something that doesn’t exist.

  37. 37
    Dave says:

    @burnspbesq: Actually, I’d like to see a floor vote and have every GOP Senator shoot themselves in the foot by voting for this.

  38. 38
    Bruce S says:

    This is good news for Obama.

    Seriously. Let the hierarchy run with this thing. Their own people don’t even agree with them…and the white evangelicals (I love the “white” tacked to “evangelical” as a demographic marking for the GOP crazies, which gives their game away) aligned with Ricky, et. al. on this would never vote in large numbers for Obama no matter what he does.

  39. 39
    Roger Moore says:

    Just one more step in their “we don’t have to obey laws we don’t like” campaign. They’ve already asked for the right to ignore anti-discrimination laws in adoption, and now contraception. My guess is that their next goal is that any business should be allowed to refuse to hire or serve anyone it morally disapproves of. The next thing you know, they’ll be saying that the 13th Amendment violates their religious freedom, since God obviously thought slavery was fine.

  40. 40
    LGRooney says:

    As long as the priests can get their little blue pills so they can be ready when the choirboys come to “assist them with their vestments,” nothing else matters.

    Where’s every sperm is sacred!

  41. 41
    Cat Lady says:

    @beltane:

    Can we save the lady bits from the scourge of Rubio, and henceforth refer to him as a pus filled canker on the dick of humanity? kthx.

  42. 42
    Bruce S says:

    God, I hope Mitt picks Rubio as his Veep…

    I’d love to see the debate between the (Catholic) Biden and Marco.

  43. 43
    Ed Drone says:

    @Comrade Dread:

    The ultimate goal will be to eliminate as many regulations as possible in the employment realm,

    There’s a legislator somewhere (New Hampshire? Maine? I can’t recall) that wants to do away with a mandated lunch hour for workers. Just today I read that. Not a quote from the 30s or the 19th Century, but today.

    Next up: repeal of the 8-hour day and 40-hour week.

    Time to join the Wobblies and start practicing:

    “Solidarity forever,
    Solidarity forever,
    Solidarity forever,
    For the Union makes us strong!”

    Ed

  44. 44
    Linnaeus says:

    @Dave:

    Kay is the best, most focused, most informative, most politically astute writer here. A thousand kudos.

    I don’t like to engage in too much comparison of folks here at B-J, because I think the front-pagers all have their own strengths, but I will say that Kay is absolutely outstanding and we are very fortunate to have her here.

  45. 45
    WereBear says:

    They need new fuel to fire up that screaming Base.

    But I think they picked the wrong effigy to set aflame.

  46. 46
    Roger Moore says:

    @Steeplejack:

    I wonder when someone (pundit) will connect the dots that this is another compelling argument for universal health care. “Your church/business ‘doesn’t feel comfortable’ offering contraception as part of its health plan? Fine. With universal health care you’re out of the loop and that problem goes away. So can we put you down as being in favor of that now?”

    Great, until the crazies get in charge and decide to cut out every service they don’t like. What gaping holes would the Republicans cut in our coverage if they knew it would affect every person in the country not rich enough to buy additional services from for-profit non-government clinics?

  47. 47
    beltane says:

    @Cat Lady: OK. From here on out I shall refer to him as Senator Smegma.

  48. 48
    joeyess says:

    what a surprise. as signs of an improving economy make appearance, the GOP goes all in on culture war.

    they really have no fucking ideas, do they?

  49. 49
    gmf says:

    The GOP is like “Jackass” set in the world of politics – each member of the show is trying to out-do the others by one-upping the crazy shit the others are doing.

  50. 50
    KG says:

    @General Stuck:

    human sacrifice of liberal virgins

    yeah, good luck finding any of those older than 15…

    (sorry, couldn’t help it)

  51. 51
    Emma says:

    I was just at TPM, where the lead story is the Democrats deserting the President on this. Can someone please set up a SuperPAC to go after these cowards? The “you’re-not-really-a-Democrat-if-you-bail-out-on-Democrats” superPac? I’d kick in some cash.

  52. 52
    harlana says:

    like most commenters, this does appear to be a bridge too far for most people, regardless of political affiliation – but they’re so determined to cross it and i will enjoy watching it all crumble before they can make it across to the other side

    altho i would prefer splosions over just crumbling like another one of those neglected bridges in their respective districts

    and it’s so ironic to hear someone i find utterly revolting a “rising star” – i just can’t believe where we are right now

  53. 53
    Cat Lady says:

    @beltane:

    Santorum/Smegma 2012!

  54. 54
    iriedc says:

    Kay -thanks for this post. I’ve been asking my husband for two years about why men don’t speak up more forcefully for protect *everyone’s* right to birth control. He’s shrugged me off because he thought I was being a chicken little about conservative attack on contraception, mainly because he hasn’t thought they’d be stupid or evil enough to do it. In today’s world of DNA tests men shoyld be far more concerned: the assholes among them can’t possibly impregnate the girl down the street, get his friends to scream “slut,” and then walk away as was done in the not-so-good ole days.
    These people scare me deeply.

  55. 55
    beltane says:

    @joeyess: We knew they’d have to return to the culture war stuff but who would have guessed the GOP was going to go all in with a War on Heterorsexuality?

  56. 56
    aimai says:

    @Steeplejack:

    Its actually why some people are afraid of “Universal Health Care”–because there’s a single point of attack to cut off procedures that Congress decides it doesn’t like. Its kind of the flip side of the “death panels” argument but coming from the left. Once there’s a single source for funding and for determining eligibility and coverage there is more power for Congress and the right wing loons, not less. People know this is the case with medicare, medicaid and with welfare benefits themselves. He who pays the piper, calls the tune. Anyone who has been watching how viciously the right wing and the general populace treats the poor who accept any kind of government aid knows that once we are all on a national health care plan the cruelty will simply be extended to everyone.

    I’m still pro single payer but its not without its risks.

    aimai

  57. 57
    harlana says:

    @Comrade Dread: in short, slavery – how long before they advocate chains?

  58. 58
    The Moar You Know says:

    Since when do employers “pay for” health insurance?

    @kay: My company pays for 90% of an employee’s health insurance premiums. The employee pays for the other 10%.

    Nonetheless, I shouldn’t be able to yank all the women’s contraceptive coverage just because I’m feeling cranky one day. Or because Tyrannosaurus Jesus told me to.

  59. 59
    Fester Addams says:

    Now you’ve got me wondering what the benefits package for employees of the Christian Science Monitor offers in the way of health coverage…

  60. 60
    ruemara says:

    You know what, I’m listening to Thom Hartmann-liberal über-progressive of choice for many, whine about how this is just awful because we should have national healthcare so we could allow religious affiliate hospitals that could discriminate at will. Even supposed liberal pundits don’t seem to understand that their demagoguery for their cause should not involve our uteri. He’s also lauding the Catholic Church for their piety and devotion to civil liberty and many causes. This is ridiculous.

  61. 61
    Ben Cisco says:

    And once again the NeoConfederates go with Plan B – saying/doing whatever pisses off liberals, to be updated daily as needed.

  62. 62
    canuckistani says:

    @matryoshka:

    According to Wikipedia, the Rubio family only has 4 children. How can that be? He’s been married since 1997.

    They’ve had sex 4 times.

  63. 63
    tjmn says:

    My 17 year old son just said, “Religious freedom does not mean taking rights away from others.” Good lad.

  64. 64
    Comrade Dread says:

    @Brachiator: That may be so, but the basic principle he’s arguing for is “Government shouldn’t have the rights to order a businessman to provide a benefit or a service to an employee or customer if he finds personally objectionable.”

    Applying that principle consistently means an end to literally all workplace laws (and non-discrimination laws, for that matter.)

  65. 65
    beltane says:

    @ruemara: This is just bullshit. Men (some men at least) are not getting it. Also, the right to contraception is a civil liberty, and the RC Church has expended far more effort in eliminating this particular liberty than they ever have in standing up for other liberties.

    Now I know why my ex-Catholic father cannot enter a RC Church without imploding into a quivering mass of spittle-inflected rage.

  66. 66
    sherparick says:

    I will be interested to see how the VSP in the news media like E.J. Dionne and Mark Shields who really started this by carrying water for the Bishops.

    This also the problem when you create your own media bubble. You start believing that most people will applaud your for making contraception illegal.

    Basically, this is saying that it is a fundamental “religious freedom” to make your life hell and to own your body if you are a woman.

  67. 67
    iriedc says:

    sorry all about the weird formatting of my post @ #53. unfortunately the edit function doesn’t work on my Droid.

  68. 68
    Kane says:

    For decades the left has been beaten over the head by those on the right on cultural issues. Playing the wedge issues was a winning strategy, but that’s no longer the case. Look around. Same-sex marriage continues to gain public acceptance and is being adopted in state after state. DADT was repealed and the world didn’t end. The overwhelmi­ng public support of Planned Parenthood forced Karen Handel’s resignatio­n at Komen. In dark-red Mississipp­i, they rejected the “Personhoo­d” amendment.

    The vast majority now sides with the left on these issues. As Chris Hayes pointed out last night with Rachel Maddow, for some who came of age during the 60s, they still haven’t grasped the reality that these once controvers­ial minority positions are now popular positions of the majority.

    In case you missed it, Chris and Rachel:

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/26.....1#46319961

  69. 69
    Comrade Dread says:

    @Ed Drone: That’s not that surprising.

    A lot of libertarians honestly believe that even if a company took advantage of the paucity of workplace regulations they advocate to abuse employees, that they would go out of business quickly as talented people left for other organizations.

  70. 70
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    Actually, the 90% of what your employer pays is part of your compensation package as an employee. You just don’t get to see it as money in your bank account.

  71. 71
    Comrade Dread says:

    @harlana: Or locking the factory doors again to ensure no layabouts are sneaking out for unauthorized smoke or bathroom breaks.

  72. 72
    Brachiator says:

    @Steeplejack:

    I wonder when someone (pundit) will connect the dots that this is another compelling argument for universal health care. “Your church/business ‘doesn’t feel comfortable’ offering contraception as part of its health plan? Fine. With universal health care you’re out of the loop and that problem goes away. So can we put you down as being in favor of that now?”

    Or, with absolutely no mandated health care out of the loop, each individual can work it out for himself or herself. And if you choose wrongly, well, then it sucks to be you. Have a nice libertarian day.

    @Ben Cisco:

    And once again the NeoConfederates go with Plan B – saying/doing whatever pisses off liberals, to be updated daily as needed.

    Conservatives work hard to dismantle government, and liberals think that these people give a rat’s ass about how they feel. No wonder they are winning, especially at the state level.

  73. 73
    McWaffle says:

    I, for one, welcome our new Christianist overlords.

  74. 74
    Suffern ACE says:

    @The Moar You Know: O.K. Your company is paying you in part in health insurance. Now, it is a variable payment, and unlike, say, your salary or hourly wage, you feel that you aren’t being paid. You would be quite pissed, I’m guessing, if you worked for 8.50 an hour and then the company decided to pay you 7.00 one week and 8.49 the next because “I didn’t feel like paying you this week. I’m short on cash. I figure the work was done and you wouldn’t sue me.” But that insurance premium is part of what you earn at that company. When they take additional money out of your salary so that you pay 15% instead of 10%, you are being paid less than you were before, all things being equal.

  75. 75
    FormerSwingVoter says:

    The more I follow politics, the more convinced I become that organized religion of all types is the purest manifestation of evil in the modern world.

    Yeah, I know that’s not fair to some of the smaller, more decent faiths. But still.

  76. 76
    Decided Fence Sitter says:

    @The Moar You Know: Dude that 90%, those are YOUR wages the company is paying you to do work. That’s COMPENSATION not a gift.

  77. 77
    JGabriel says:

    Kay @ Top:

    For years, liberals have been claiming that conservatives were ultimately targeting birth control, and conservatives always denied it. Marco Rubio has now all but announced that they are, in fact, targeting birth control.

    Thank you, Conservatives. We deeply appreciate your efforts to ensure that Democrats get as large a percentage of the women’s vote as we do of blacks.

    You guys ROCK!

    .

  78. 78
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @Emma: It’s time for Tim F. to put up a post about writing your congresscritters.

  79. 79
    Xenos says:

    @beltane:

    The Catholic Church was in the vanguard of upholding paleo-feudalism until the bitter end so it is not surprising to see them at the forefront of the movement to bring about a new feudal age.

    I personally find it quite interesting that Donohue outfit (The Catholic League) is named after a military outfit funded and organized by pro-Inquisition governments that committed genocide against Lutherans in the 30 years’ war.

    Now he is declaring he is going to ‘Go to war with Obama‘. I think the Secret Service ought to pop a cap in his ass, just to stay on the safe side. Got to bring the fight to the self declared terrorists, ya know.

  80. 80
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @tjmn:

    No kidding. Someone taught him well. Take a bow.

  81. 81
    trollhattan says:

    @Bruce S:

    Despite his…lack of truthfulness regarding his parents’ brave escape from Castro before Castro needed escaping from, I’ve continued to presume Marco is the VP front-runner. In the Republican hive mind, any Hispanic will harvest all Hispanic voters.

    Li’l Marco’s story will surely resonate with, say, Salvadorans and Peruvians.

  82. 82
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @ruemara: I’m sure he’s written a book on the topic and you can buy that book and find out what he thinks.

    Is anyone pointing out that the RC’s policy on birth control is fucking immoral? NPR did a story last week about near-starvation levels of hunger in the Philippines. Thirty (IIRC) years ago, Thailand and the Philippines had similar populations, poverty rates and hunger problems. Thailand introduced a government program of family planning. Thailand now exports rice to the Philippines. Three guesses as to what the problem is. NPR, being NPR, stopped just short of stating the obvious, but the implication was clear.

    EJ Dionne and Chris Matthews rolling their eyes at the policy the ignore while piously insisting on the importance of “Church teachings” are fucking sinners.

  83. 83
    mark says:

    This is all dreamed up by the Roves inside the beltway just like Terri Schiavo. If you turn on Fox or Foxlite CNN (just in the last week they have had on Ralph Reed and Andrew Breibart) its all you hear. Outside the beltway no one gives a shit. If the Democrats will just hang tough until the next tsunami or hurricane, it will all blow over.

    We know what its all about with Catholics (the official religion of fascists everywhere). Birth Control = less future Catholics. Its all about numbers, money, and power and has nothing to do with any moral compass or “core values”.

  84. 84

    For years, liberals have been claiming that conservatives were ultimately targeting birth control, and conservatives always denied it. Marco Rubio has now all but announced that they are, in fact, targeting birth control.

    Yes. Exactly.

    In a way, I’m loving this. It’s a gigantic FAIL parade. I’m loving watching the Republicans like Mitch McConnell and John Boehner, in their eagerness to attack President Obama, fail to see that they are alienating women voters and specifically YOUNG women voters. Let’s see, what group haven’t they alienated yet? Brown people are basically gone, immigrants are gone, now they’re saying goodbye to the youth vote and goodbye to the woman’s vote. This is hilarious.

    So now they’re stuck with old people on their hoverounds and the Quiverfull vote. That’s just brilliant. And they’ll lose the old people when they go after Social Security and Medicare.

  85. 85
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @Decided Fence Sitter: You’re right, except for one thing: If Republicans were able to wipe out employer coverage of health insurance tomorrow, you would not magically get that money. The company would keep it.

  86. 86
    Bokonon says:

    This is nullification. And massive resistance. Institutionalized, and made legal. By means of giving individual people (and companies) the right to not obey the law if they find it offensive.

    Think of this as an extension of the Supreme Court’s Citizen’s United decision. If corporations are person, and money is speech, and that speech can’t be limited on First Amendment grounds … then corporations can refuse to comply with federal regulations that require them to spend money if it would violate their conscience. Or the individual consciences of that corporation’s owners, CEO, political director, and so on. And you can’t do nuttin’ about it. Oh well.

    So – if devotees of the goddess Kali own a company, do they get to start practicing ritual strangulation on their employees, because they have a deeply felt belief in the need for human sacrifice that trumps civil law against killing people?

    The political right is courting anarchy right now. There literally is no stopping point to that sort of civil entropy …

  87. 87
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Kane:

    In case you missed it, Chris and Rachel

    Great segment. I was glad to hear Hayes use the word “tribal”, cause that’s what this is, pure and simple. I think he’s right about pundits being stuck in early 70’s mindset about “wedge issues”, but what I think he missed is how Catholics are heavily over-represented in the national TV politics, which was a huge factor in Great Clenis Freak-Out.

  88. 88
    beltane says:

    @Southern Beale: You’re right. I wonder who advised them that waging a war on straight people of childbearing age was a good idea. This is not how you go about winning the coveted soccer mom vote.

  89. 89
    Ben Cisco says:

    @mark:

    If you turn on Fox or Foxlite CNN TeaNN

    There you go, fixed it for ya.

  90. 90
    Decided Fence Sitter says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent): True enough, but that’s an entirely different story, based mostly on the effective narrative that has clouded the fact that health care is compensation.

    I’m a gov’t contractor, and I always get the strangest looks from recruiters and H.R. folks of prospective companies when I ask for not only a copy of the benefits, but what those benefits cost – and base my salary requirements from that information.

  91. 91
    Spaghetti Lee says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent):

    My congresscritter is Joe Walsh, and I’m thinking he might, um, have a vested interest in using birth control, if he doesn’t want to pay alimony for even more kids.

  92. 92
    Rita R. says:

    @mark:

    It has to do with control. Sexuality and procreation are fundamental to our humanity, and one of the main ways to control people is to dictate how, when and with who they can have sex, as well as not allow them to have regulation of their own fertility. This is what cults do. Fascist states. The Catholic Church has been around for 2000 years. It knows what it’s doing.

  93. 93
    Brachiator says:

    @Comrade Dread:

    That may be so, but the basic principle he’s arguing for is “Government shouldn’t have the rights to order a businessman to provide a benefit or a service to an employee or customer if he finds personally objectionable.”
    __
    Applying that principle consistently means an end to literally all workplace laws (and non-discrimination laws, for that matter.)

    Yeah, and so? This is the libertarian, small government wet dream.

    As long as the rules are made by Jeebus lovers. If a Mooslim community passed a law outlawing the sale of liquor, or mandating that only male non drinkers could be hired, or that a male doctor could not treat a female patient, these clowns would be screaming for some government intervention.

    A lot of libertarians honestly believe that even if a company took advantage of the paucity of workplace regulations they advocate to abuse employees, that they would go out of business quickly as talented people left for other organizations.

    These boneheads are just too stupid. We have, for example, the recent revelation about how Apple, google, and some other high tech firms had a gentlemen’s agreement not to go after each other’s employees. Worse, if an employee, on his or her own, tried to go to one of these firms, their application would be politely shit canned.

    But libertarians don’t seem to believe that collusion or monopoly could exist in their free market fantasy land.

  94. 94
    ellennelle says:

    wouldn’t the logical questions start emerging, like gosh, shouldn’t we change our laws to allow leniency in mercy killings? or adjust the 19th amendment to accommodate the misogyny of extreme israeli haredi who might be in the us? i could, of course, go on, but you get the idea.

    basically, this outcry is trying to insist that it’s the american way to allow the religious demands of them minority dictate to the majority.

    charlie pierce has it right. and so does kay; this is where they’ve been driving all along.

  95. 95
    jnfr says:

    The coverage of this on MSNBC is consistently horrible, all parroting right wing talking points and fluttering over having to talk about sex. Atrios tweeted that it’s like the 1990s again, and the Villagers are all virgins. I haven’t heard one good discussion that really included all sides, and the stories Kay started the post with haven’t been mentioned. And that even though they had a glowing interview with Rubio to kick off the day, all about his new bill and how he was standing up for religious liberty and why won’t those nasty Obama types just compromise for fucks sake??? It’s enough to give Little Luke Russert a major sad.

  96. 96
    Rita R. says:

    @Bokonon:

    They’ve been courting anarchy, and, I’d argue, borderline treason, since January 21, 2009. When a Republican president comes back into office, they’ll revert to courting fascism.

  97. 97
    Interrobang says:

    Employers in the US already have a great deal of discretion about whether to let their employees pee on the job or not. (After this book was published, OSHA “issued a Memorandum requiring employers to let workers go to the bathroom when they need to go,” but apparently enforcement is as lax as an empty bladder.

    So, yeah, they already do restrict your ability to piss on the job, so eating is the logical next step. And as long as OSHA is woefully understaffed and the labour laws are dreadfully unenforced, the toll in increased workplace injuries and fatalities from dehydration, hunger, and illness will be “just a cost of doing business,” I’m afraid.

  98. 98
    lou says:

    Just think of how far this can be taken:

    A Jehovah’s Witness business owner can refuse to cover any blood transfusions.

    A Christian Scientist business owner can refuse to provide health insurance at all.

    A Muslim business owner can refuse to hire women and can forbid his employees from eating pork or drinking alcohol.

    etc, etc.

  99. 99
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Brachiator:

    But libertarians don’t seem to believe that collusion or monopoly could exist in their free market fantasy land.

    The motherfuckers have obviously never read The Wealth of Nations

  100. 100
    Kane says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Chris and Rachel also made an excellent point that the bishops were clearly looking for a fight. It was the first time that I had heard someone in the media point this out.

  101. 101
    honus says:

    @kay: Exactly. And the same goes for the “free contraception” meme I keep hearing. It’s not free, it’s something employees work for and part of their compensation.

  102. 102
    JGabriel says:

    @Spaghetti Lee:

    My congresscritter is Joe Walsh, and I’m thinking he might, um, have a vested interest in using birth control, if he doesn’t want to pay alimony for even more kids.

    Probably not, since Walsh doesn’t pay the alimony either.

    .

  103. 103
    FormerSwingVoter says:

    @beltane:

    Now I know why my ex-Catholic father cannot enter a RC Church without imploding into a quivering mass of spittle-inflected rage.

    Yeah, that’ll happen. Nothing will distance you further from the Catholic Church than listening to the things they say and paying attention to the things they do.

  104. 104
    slag says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Is anyone pointing out that the RC’s policy on birth control is fucking immoral?

    Yes! I would like someone to point that out, please. Lots of people! Lots and lots of people!

    Kay thinks the best way to fight this is taking the slippery slope angle. I’m all about going straight at the morality of it. The RCs are (as usual) claiming morality on their side. I say we call bullshit. Really…I don’t see how we fight those robed fuckers on any other grounds.

    Besides which, we have the convenient reality that adequate health care is a huge moral issue.

  105. 105
    Comrade Luke says:

    Perhaps the Catholics should get their own house in order before spouting off.

    In today’s paper: Bishop warns of sex abuse cases in Asia.

    I’m starting to think that the aggressive spread of Catholicism had less to do with spreading the word, and more with finding fresh meat.

  106. 106
    Jenn says:

    call your senators! I just did. I am not a second class citizen, goddammit. Put the fear of God into them. Now that Rubio has introduced 2043, this isn’t a disagreement between the White House and the CCB, it’s legislating my health as political football, subject to the whims of my employers. Bastards. Call your Senators. Call the White House!

  107. 107
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    TPM Headline: Dems starting to abandon Obama
    content: Joe Mancin and one congressman, Jon Larson of CT, are bailing. Not that I don’t expect a bunch of Stupak-esque Cath0lics to get wobbly, as Maggie the T said.

  108. 108
    Linnaeus says:

    @JGabriel:

    Probably not, since Walsh doesn’t pay the alimony either.

    So I got me an office, birth certificates on the wall. Just leave a message, maybe I’ll call.

  109. 109

    My how times have changed.

    Looking at JFK’s 1960 speech where he pledged to not be the “Catholic” president but the American president … and seeing how Republicans have now done a complete flip-flop … I’m just amazed.

  110. 110
    FormerSwingVoter says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Is anyone pointing out that the RC’s policy on birth control is fucking immoral?

    Yeah, seriously. I’ve taken to calling the occasional Bible-thumper I meet evil to their face when they bring up politics (and how those who disagree with the Church must be forced by law to pretend they don’t). Most have never even considered that they could possibly be looked upon as doing bad things by anyone. It upsets them, but fuck ’em, they fucking deserve it. They are twisted and insane and don’t get to be treated as if they’re noble just because of which magic book they decided to read (or, more accurately, claim to read but instead focus exclusively on the parts that confirm their own bias).

  111. 111
    Lurker says:

    @Southern Beale:

    I’m loving watching the Republicans like Mitch McConnell and John Boehner, in their eagerness to attack President Obama, fail to see that they are alienating women voters and specifically YOUNG women voters.

    I want to believe this, but are women voters in general as aware of this issue as much as the Catholic voters who are hearing about it in church on Sundays?

    Keep in mind I speak as a person who gets her information from blogs and not from TV. If it wasn’t for this blog and Ezra Klein’s blog, I would not have heard about this.

  112. 112
    kay says:

    @slag:

    I think they want the whole rule thrown out, because they’re merging with secular hospitals.

    Sebelius probably knows this, because she knows more about the current state of the healthcare system than anyone else in the country.

    They can’t comply even with a broad religious exception, because they’ll be partners with a secular hospital that has to comply.

    If we were lied to about the whole premise of this thing, I’m going to be really pissed off.

    Oh, and Lawrence O’Donnell should resign in shame, for getting played.

    It’s like peeling an onion, this thing. Just really not playing straight with people.

  113. 113
    Brachiator says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: RE: But libertarians don’t seem to believe that collusion or monopoly could exist in their free market fantasy land.

    The motherfuckers have obviously never read The Wealth of Nations

    They’re ‘Murikins. They can quote Adam Smith without ever having to have gone to the trouble of reading him.

    Of course, many liberals have never read him either. Makes it easier to go on about how free markets don’t really exist if you don’t wrestle with the concepts or the examples Smith provided.

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Is anyone pointing out that the RC’s policy on birth control is fucking immoral?

    Unpossible. The Baby Jeebus hates birth control. It can’t be immoral ifn’ the Bibble don’t say so.

  114. 114
    kay says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    I don’t think they understand the issue.

    Sebelius understands the health care system in this country. It’s all she does, every day. That these congressional morons are second-guessing her is insulting.

  115. 115
    Cat Lady says:

    @kay:

    Maybe it’s time for Obama to give one of those speech thingy’s that only he can do to explain it like everyone’s five years old, cuz that’s what these Catholic pundits are – they’re still little altar boy wannabes.

  116. 116
    slag says:

    @kay:

    If we were lied to about the whole premise of this thing, I’m going to be really pissed off.

    Haha! Good point. There is that angle as well.

  117. 117
    kay says:

    @Cat Lady:

    Maybe it’s time for Obama to give one of those speech thingy’s

    He’d never be able to. It looks more and more like he’d have to start with “everyone lied to you about what’s really behind this”.

    I’d love for him to give a general speech about the health care law, though.

  118. 118
    Hill Dweller says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    TPM Headline: Dems starting to abandon Obama
    content: Joe Mancin and one congressman, Jon Larson of CT, are bailing. Not that I don’t expect a bunch of Stupak-esque Cath0lics to get wobbly, as Maggie the T said.

    TPM has been acting more like HuffPo and Politco with their headlines recently.

  119. 119
    Chickenjuice says:

    SINGLE FUCKING PAYER NOW

  120. 120
    mark says:

    reminds me of a headline in The Onion

    “Christian Scientist Pharmacist Refuses To Fill Any Prescriptions”

  121. 121
    Ash Can says:

    I just want to ask what I think is a blatantly obvious question, but so far haven’t seen addressed on any of the sites I visit: Why aren’t insurance companies, and the insurance lobby, flipping their ever-loving shit over this nonsense? Insurance companies HATE paying claims, and they LOVE prevention of any kind, because it saves them a ton of cash — and contraception most definitely is a cheap way for them to save a fortune. I can’t imagine the big insurance players are just ignoring this shitshow, or sitting idly by and saying, “Oh look, isn’t that precious” — unless they’re convinced beyond any doubt that said shitshow is going precisely nowhere.

  122. 122
    geg6 says:

    @Lurker:

    It’s been all over the news, cable, network and local.

    And if women aren’t aware of it now, they will be. Just go ask the SGK people how quickly these types of stories get around.

    @FormerSwingVoter:

    I’m with you. I’m sick and tired of holding my tongue so I don’t offend the delicate fee-fees of god botherers. Fuck them. Every single one of them. They are a part of the problem simply by virtue of supporting the institutions that put forward this shit. Evil fucks, all of them.

  123. 123
    Suffern ACE says:

    @Lurker: They are assuming that they don’t have young women voters or that the women voters that they have won’t go vote Dem over this. They are assuming that they will get more white male middle class catholics (Yes. Them.) to vote for them. Based on the reaction of the wealthy white male Catholic punditry, they could be correct.

    They are betting that the gender gap will be a wash at the very least.

    Also, this is kind of SEXY stuff we’re talking about here. As someone pointed out, once the press corps gets an in allowing them to talk non-stop about young women having sex and what it all means, there is really no stopping them from talking about it (while being outraged that they must discuss it) until the topic has been covered from every one of their preferred angles.

  124. 124
    Martin says:

    War on birth control? Bring it. We should welcome the GOP opposing any issue that 95% of the public agree with.

  125. 125
    gumbo says:

    I called the White House today (after getting busy signals all morning, I finally made it through this afternoon), and the woman who answered the phone was so happy to hear from me. She said I was one of the only people calling in support of reproductive freedom. The religious right is organized and vocal, and they are steadily chipping away at hard-fought rights for women. PLEASE, if you have a minute, call the White House and let them know that a majority of us want birth control covered in insurance plans.

    W.H. Comment Line: (202) 456-1111

  126. 126
    Martin says:

    @Lurker:

    I want to believe this, but are women voters in general as aware of this issue as much as the Catholic voters who are hearing about it in church on Sundays?

    Yes. Don’t underestimate awareness of reproductive issues among women. And note that all of the moron pundits calling this a problem for Obama are men. And note that all of the interviews with the SGK folks that were of any merit were done by women.

  127. 127
    Barry says:

    @aimai: “Its actually why some people are afraid of “Universal Health Care”—because there’s a single point of attack to cut off procedures that Congress decides it doesn’t like. ”

    OTOH, Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security.

    It can get hard to cut such things.

  128. 128
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @kay:

    They can’t comply even with a broad religious exception, because they’ll be partners with a secular hospital that has to comply.

    That’s the hospital-industrial complex at work. I think there’s an idealised notion that Catholic healthcare means a small-town hospital with a dozen nuns as nurses, when it’s massive consolidated megahospitals and multi-location clinics.

  129. 129
    danimal says:

    @Ash Can: If this issue gets any real traction, the insurance companies will birth kittens on live tv. Right now, it’s just GOP posturing.

    Thankfully, the GOP is really, really stupid these days. They found a small wedge issue that could have worked for them, and blew it out of proportion. It will be very, very easy for Obama to stand firm and let the GOP become the anti-contraception party.

    They just don’t know when to stop. Thank God for Republican overreach.

  130. 130
    Barry says:

    @Comrade Dread: “A lot of libertarians honestly believe that even if a company took advantage of the paucity of workplace regulations they advocate to abuse employees, that they would go out of business quickly as talented people left for other organizations.”

    At this point, no – I’ll call anybody who says that a liar.

  131. 131
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Martin:

    And note that all of the moron pundits calling this a problem for Obama are men

    a few notable exceptions– Cokie Roberts and Melinda Henneberger, who ib Hardball last night sounded like a FoxNews B-lister who goes on with Hannity’s guest host in August. I don’t count the Noonans or the Parkers (if that’s not redundant)

    You know, this really is seen widely among Catholics and people of other faiths as an attack on religious liberty. Maybe the founders were
    wrong to guarantee free exercise of religion in the First Amendment, but
    that is what they did.

  132. 132
    KateH says:

    I just called (thanks for that # – everyone should call), and said that I want the administration to stand up to this religious whining and make sure women aren’t thrown under the bus in the guise of protecting some man’s ego (okay, I got a little heated). I think I might have startled the elderly lady who answered the call.

  133. 133
    Brachiator says:

    @Hill Dweller:

    Dems starting to abandon Obama

    For Romney? Or Santorum?

  134. 134
    kay says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Cokie Roberts

    There’s no way she could have understood it when she weighed in on it. It was stupid and arrogant to mouth off before she had the facts, because she has a big megaphone.

    I swear to Christ, but the lazy arrogance of the punditry is going to bring this fucking country to its knees. We are just now finding out what this is really about, but they had to be first out of the gate, because they’re SO SMART. She can’t wait for the facts?

    It’s really irresponsible. The idea that Cokie Roberts knows more about the health care law and the health care system than Sebelelius does is ludicrous.

  135. 135
    jonas says:

    @Ash Can: This is a good question. But I’m not sure it really moves any major actuarial needles for the insurance companies. Sure, they save some money up front by not covering birth control. But would that really result in a lot of unplanned pregnancies that they then have to pay for? I think the insurance companies have probably figured out that women who really want birth control will usually just pay for it out of pocket and it isn’t really their concern.

  136. 136
    g says:

    this means that no entity has to cover birth control in a health plan if it can point to a religious reason for not doing so. And the entity itself is not required to have any religious affiliation. It could just be a plain old corporation. That means that if the middle-aged white guy who runs your company is religiously opposed to birth control, he can have it stripped out of your insurance plan—even if his Viagra is still covered. You could wake up the next morning and find you’re paying full price for drugs that you once got for free or at much-reduced prices.

    So we custom-design insurance plans to suit every employer’s principles? No birth control, and also, no alcohol counseling? No treatment for venereal disease? You can have your foot injury treated, unless you got it while dancing?

  137. 137
    Judas Escargot, Your Postmodern Neighbor says:

    @Bokonon:

    The political right is courting anarchy right now. There literally is no stopping point to that sort of civil entropy …

    Another word for this state of affairs would be “Eschaton”.

    They didn’t get the Apocalypse they were promised for Y2K. And, while 9/11 gave them some hope, the resulting wars were disappointingly secular.

    But dammit, they will have the Armageddon they were promised. Even if they have to bring it on themselves.

  138. 138
    g says:

    Yes, I’d think, overall, that any policy that prevents unwanted pregnancies would, in the long run, be more profitable than one that doesn’t, and so the premiums would be less.

    Are the Bishops willing to pay MORE for a more restricted policy that results in higher costs for pre-natal care, childbirth, hospitalization, and a greater number of dependents?

  139. 139
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @kay: if we did a dictionary of Broderism, “Lazy, arrogant and shooting off one’s mouth without facts” would be part of the definition of “Cokie”, with a cross-reference to “Roberts Rule: It doesn’t matter if it’s true or not, it’s out there”. I know that’s true of most pundits, but she brings an extra dose of smugness to any discussion. Like Lawrence O’Donnell, she is utterly infatuated with her own insider status.

  140. 140
    Barry says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: “but what I think he missed is how Catholics are heavily over-represented in the national TV politics, which was a huge factor in Great Clenis Freak-Out.”

    If it were, then there would have been an actual Crusade as the child abuse scandals broke.

    They’re just right-wingers, or the sort of ‘centrist’ who never saw a right-wing lynch mob that they didn’t join.

  141. 141
    rikryah says:

    bring it

    BRING.IT!!!

    this is so basic, every woman can understand it.

  142. 142
    lurker says:

    I don’t know if anyone has ever raised this point, but how about some Dem offers an amendment stating that only natural born persons are deemed to have the ability to have religious faith.

    Basically, it’s fine if the owner of an LLC or some other non-corporation wants to claim religious exemption. But if you’ve organized as a corporation, you almost by definition cannot claim religious belief (as the corporation is an entity completely separate from the person(s) forming/running it).

    Just a thought. Of course, I’m too lazy to research this issue. Maybe someone’s thought of it, though.

  143. 143
    maurinsky says:

    I saw that line on Facebook a few minutes ago “even my progressive Catholic female friends are opposed to this move.”

    After a little thinking, I realize that the reason that the Catholic Church enabled child rape is because they’ve been keeping their conscience in my uterus all this time!

  144. 144
    benis says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    Employer-paid benefits are part and parcel of an employee’s total compensation.

    In our company, our policy is that we pay 100% of each employees’ health care premium. If an employee chooses to forgo our healthcare coverage, we add a couple bucks per hour to his/her pay.

  145. 145
    rikryah says:

    KAY,

    you are a gem. thank you for your thoughtful and informative posts on so many topics.

  146. 146
    Brachiator says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    You know, this really is seen widely among Catholics and people of other faiths as an attack on religious liberty. Maybe the founders were wrong to guarantee free exercise of religion in the First Amendment, but that is what they did.

    Wheres’s the problem? Couldn’t any religious person sign a waiver excluding birth control from their coverage?

    I’m not seeing where the Constitution ensures any particular Church’s right to impose their views on all their employees or students who might attend their schools, especially when these individuals may not be adherents of that or any other religion.

  147. 147
    Voncey says:

    The media coverage has been ridiculous. They’re all crowing about how the Dems are abandoning Obama but there are maybe a total of 5 Dems who have gone public. hardly a groundswell.

  148. 148
    benis says:

    @Suffern ACE:

    But that insurance premium is part of what you earn at that company. When they take additional money out of your salary so that you pay 15% instead of 10%, you are being paid less than you were before, all things being equal.

    In most cases that happens because the insurance provider has increased the cost of the company premiums and the employer cannot afford to eat that increase.

    BTDT.

  149. 149
    shortstop says:

    @Brachiator: Jim didn’t say that. He’s quoting someone else.

    Someone who apparently doesn’t know that Catholics outstrip the “all Americans” category in supporting the administration on this.

    So all the fictional “diehard liberal” Catholics who are upset with the mandate, please raise your hands. No, not anonymously on blogs. In 3D where we can get a good look at you.

  150. 150
    cminus says:

    Does anyone know the Latin for “sharia law”?

  151. 151
    Brachiator says:

    @shortstop:

    Jim didn’t say that. He’s quoting someone else.

    Yeh, I was just responding in general. As with all the Catholics who support the administration on this, I’m just not seeing a real problem.

    Which is of course why some GOP moran is sure to suggest that Obama should be impeached for his unconstitutional actions here.

  152. 152
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @cminus:

    Does anyone know the Latin for “sharia law”?

    Canon law?

    This is the thing…a number of religions have their own legal traditions that are apart from that of the state. These laws (like divorce/annulments among Catholics) apply to those within the Church and have no effect at all on people outside it. The Catholic Church doesn’t recognize civil marriage dissolution, so you have to go within the Church to get an annulment if you want to remarry within the Church. Newt Gingrich had two non-Catholic marriages before he converted and tied the knot (for now) with consort #3. That’s the only marriage he’s ever had according to the Catholic Church.

  153. 153
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: So, by this logic, Newt Gingrich Enterprises should be able to deny an employee the ability to put her child by a first marriage on her insurance, because he’s a Catholic and his conscience precludes him from condoning that kind of fornication.

  154. 154
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @FlipYrWhig:

    Well, yeah, that’s pretty much it. His conscience (Ok, have to stop and clean up coffee from my keyboard here) dictates that. Of course, that would apply only if she were Catholic, she’d be covered by Canon Law.

    Actually, I’m not sure what an annulment does to the issue of an annulled Catholic marriage. Does it instantly turn them into bastards? Someone more into the esoterica of this probably needs to shine the light of, well, not reason, obviously, on to this.

Comments are closed.