Over-The-Counter Birth Control Issue Finds Its Way Into Midterm Election Debates
Some Republican Senate candidates have expressed support for allowing certain types of contraception to be sold without a prescription. Critics say it is part of a strategy to "muddy the waters" regarding the Hobby Lobby case.
The Washington Post: GOP Senate Hopefuls Favor Over-The-Counter Birth Control
Several Republican candidates for Senate have embraced an unorthodox issue as the midterm election approaches -- support for over-the-counter birth control pills. At least three GOP hopefuls have spoken during the summer in favor of allowing certain types of contraception to be sold without a prescription. Rep. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.), who is challenging incumbent Sen. Mark Udall (D), on Tuesday released a television ad in which he tells a room full of nodding women, “I believe the pill ought to be available over the counter, around the clock, without a prescription. Cheaper and easier for you” (Somashekhar, 9/2).
Politico Pro: Calls For Over-The-Counter Birth Control Hit The Campaign Trail
Republican calls to allow “the Pill” to be sold over the counter are mounting, but critics charge that it’s a hollow stunt to “muddy the waters” after the Hobby Lobby Supreme Court case -- and before the November elections. Rep. Cory Gardner, who is running for Senate against Democratic Sen. Mark Udall in Colorado, is the biggest booster of the idea. He’s written an op-ed for the Denver Post and put up an ad this week touting it (Villacorta, 9/2).
In related news -
The New York Times’ Dealbook: In Hobby Lobby Ruling, A Missing Definition Stirs Debate
The Supreme Court’s decision in June that some companies did not have to provide contraceptive coverage for their employees only started the debate. In Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, the Supreme Court decided that under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1933, the religious convictions of a company’s owners could apply to the company itself. However, the court did not apply the decision to all corporations. Instead, it merely held that for-profit “closely held corporations” could be exempt from providing the coverage under the Affordable Care Act (Solomon, 9/2).