Abortion, Contraception Politics Still On Front Burner As Primaries Loom
The political furor around abortion and contraception shows no sign of abating, according to news outlets.
The New York Times: Santorum Says Religion and Conservative Principles Are at Risk
Two days before the Arizona and Michigan primaries, Rick Santorum on Sunday made a broad appeal to social conservatives ... [he] veered into a critique of President Obama, whom he did not name, for his health care plan and his recent directive that insurance companies pay for contraceptives for anyone who wants them, even if they work for a Catholic institution (Seelye, 2/26).
The Sacramento Bee/McClatchy Newspapers: Santorum Is A Rock-Ribbed Social Conservative, And That Troubles Some Voters
[T]he same steely resolve that boosts him with the Republican Party's sizable social conservative bloc could also be a huge liability among moderate voters ... Santorum is against legalized abortion, even in a case of rape or incest ... [He] warns of the dangers of prenatal testing; and is personally against manufactured contraceptives because, he says, they are a contributor to the breakdown of the traditional American family (Douglas and Lightman, 2/26).
Politico: Koch: 'Santorum Is Nuts'
[T]he former New York City mayor and President Obama endorser lambasted Rick Santorum in an interview on Aaron Klein's WABC Radio Show. ... "Santorum is nuts," [Ed] Koch told Klein. ... "I admire him as someone who is a true believer from his point of view, but when he takes it to the point where he wants to impose it on other people, like eliminate contraception, if that ain’t crazy..." (Haberman, 2/26).
The Hill: House GOP To Renew Attacks On Health Law As Supreme Court Hears Case
[A] likely target: The health law's requirement that employees of religiously affiliated institutions have access to birth control without copays. ... Separately, Reps. Jeff Fortenberry (R-Neb.) and Steve Chabot (R-Ohio) both already have bills overturning the so-called "birth control mandate" pending in Upton's committee (Pecquet, 2/25).
Roll Call: Democrats Hoping Politics of Birth Control Work for Them
[A] group of Democratic Senators attacked a "conscience clause" amendment from Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) as part of "a concerted Republican effort" to restrict women’s access to health care. But in doing so, Democrats painted the difference between the parties as one based in election-year politics — politics they clearly think they can win, especially with women voters (Shiner, 2/24).
The Washington Post: McDonnell Walks Fine Line With Conservative General Assembly
Virginia Gov. Robert F. McDonnell met with Republican members of the General Assembly more than 60 times in the past month ... McDonnell warned his fellow Republicans to limit their socially conservative legislation and focus on job creation and the state budget ... But social issues have yielded the most-intense debates and garnered the most attention. The ultrasound legislation, for instance, drew the ire and ridicule of left-leaning cable shows and late-night comedians (Kumar, 2/25).
CNN: The Latest Legislative Tool: Satire
For the very serious business of making serious laws for states with legitimately serious problems, there’s an unexpected streak of comedic wackiness running through governmental chambers. ... Virginia Democrat Janet Howell amended an anti-abortion bill to require rectal exams for men before they could get erectile dysfunction medications. This week Rep. Yasmin Neal, D-Georgia, tired of an anti-abortion debate she says ignored women’s points of view, introduced a bill that would block men from having vasectomies unless the procedure would prevent death or serious injury (Gumbrecht, 2/24).