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    The Wages of Ideology (Does Mitt Romney Support Equal Pay for Women? Doesn't Look Like It.) →

    womenaresociety:

    Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin is struggling to fight off a determined effort to replace him in an extraordinary recall election scheduled for June 5. The original reason more than 900,000 Wisconsinites signed petitions to get him out of office was his signature on a bill that stripped most public employees of their collective bargaining rights. But, every few weeks, Mr. Walker provides new grounds for becoming the third American governor to be removed by his own electorate.

    The most recent came last week, when he signed the repeal of a 2009 law allowing the victims of wage discrimination to pursue damages in state court, which is generally easier than filing a federal complaint. The principal reason for the original law was to narrow a significant gap in compensation between men and women. At the time the law was passed, women earned an average of 75 cents for every $1 men earned; by 2010, after the law was passed, the average for women had edged up to about 78 cents.

    By closing off this important avenue to state courts to women, Mr. Walker was acceding to the lobbying demands of business groups, including hotel and restaurant trade groups that employ large numbers of women in low-paying jobs and do not wish their wage scale to be challenged in court. (He called it a “gravy train” for trial lawyers.) That’s the kind of thing he’s been doing since he took office in 2011, and it’s an important reason why he was warmly embraced during the Wisconsin presidential primary last month by Mitt Romney, who won that state.

    “I applaud your governor,” said Mr. Romney, who also called him a “hero” and a “man of courage.” Mr. Romney’s campaign has its own problems with issues of pay equity. On Wednesday morning, his staff could not answer a simple question about whether Mr. Romney supports the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, the first federal law signed by President Obama, in 2009, which makes it easier for women to sue for pay discrimination.

    A few hours later, the Romney campaign put out a bland statement saying he supports pay equity and “is not looking to change current law.” But many elements of the Republican Party are eagerly looking to change the law. If Mr. Romney is elected and a Republican-led Congress presents him with a bill overturning the Ledbetter act, would he sign it, following the path of his hero, Mr. Walker? That question went unanswered, just as the campaign never said whether it supported Mr. Walker’s repeal.

    The Romney campaign sent out several statements on Wednesday from Republican women making the misleading claim that women had been disproportionately hurt by Mr. Obama’s economic policies. That concern lacks credibility, considering that several of those women voted against the Ledbetter act, including Representatives Mary Bono Mack and Cathy McMorris Rodgers.

    Mr. Romney has also said he wants to “get rid of” Planned Parenthood, just as Mr. Walker ended state financing for nine Planned Parenthood clinics in Wisconsin last year. Mr. Romney’s disregard for the welfare and leading concerns of women is costing the presumptive Republican nominee support among women.

    He may try to roll back these positions toward the center for the general election this fall, but voters should be skeptical. As Mr. Walker’s actions show, they are at the core of Republican ideology.

    *The 75 cents per dollar statistic is relevant to white men and women only.

    — 2 years ago with 9 notes
    #scott walker  #mitt romney  #women's rights  #injustice  #women's health  #equal pay  #lily ledbetter fair pay act  #fair pay  #equal rights for women  #equal rights  #planned parenthood  #ideologyr  #republicanr  #republicans  #discrimination  #romney  #romney campaign 
    womenaresociety:

Senate Rejects Step Targeting Coverage of Birth Control
The Senate on Thursday upheld President Obama’s birth control policy, voting to kill a Republican effort to let employers and health insurance companies deny coverage for contraceptives and other items they object to on religious or moral grounds.
 
The 51-to-48 vote illustrated a sharp divide between the parties and brought to the Congressional forefront the social issues that have roiled the race for the Republican presidential nomination. Over four days of debate, Democrats accused Republicans of infringing on women’s rights and focusing on issues long settled while Republicans accused Democrats of threatening religious freedom and violating the Constitution.
“The Senate will not allow women’s health care choices to be taken away from them,” said Senator Patty Murray, Democrat of Washington.
The politically charged fight heated up last month after the Obama administration unveiled its policy requiring health insurance plans to offer free contraceptives for women — a rule that provoked furious criticism from Roman Catholic institutions and some other religious groups. The administration quickly offered a revision that would force the health insurers — not the institutions — to bear the cost.
Still, Senate Republicans tried to seize on the uproar surrounding the administration rule and offered a Senate proposal that would allow a broad exemption for employers, framing it as a matter of conscience as much as contraception.
“The president is trampling on religious freedom,” said Senator Mike Johanns, Republican of Nebraska.
Democrats saw the issue tilting politically in their favor in recent days and forced the Senate vote even as some Republicans indicated unease about pressing the matter. One Republican, Senator Olympia J. Snowe of Maine, joined 48 Democrats and two independents in opposing the plan, days after she announced she was retiring from the Senate. Three Democratic senators — Bob Casey of Pennsylvania, Joe Manchin III of West Virginia and Ben Nelson of Nebraska — voted for the proposal, along with 45 Republicans. Mr. Casey and Mr. Manchin are up for re-election this year. Mr. Nelson is retiring.
Despite the vote, Congress is not done with the contraception debate. Speaker John A. Boehner said Thursday that House Republicans also wanted to protect religious employers who object to the requirement for contraceptive coverage.
“It’s important for us to win this issue,” Mr. Boehner said. He did not offer any details about a legislative path forward, but hinted that it would differ from the one tried by Senate Republicans.
Illustrating the political power of the issue, Mitt Romney, the Republican presidential candidate, moved quickly on Wednesday to clarify a comment that he was against the Republican plan by Senator Roy Blunt, Republican of Missouri. Mr. Romney said that he had misunderstood the question and that he supported Mr. Blunt’s proposal. Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. weighed in on the issue during a visit to Iowa State University on Thursday, saying that the administration plan was “screwed up in the first iteration” but that the compromise was the correct approach.
In the Senate, Democrats, defending the new health care law, said the Republican proposal went far beyond contraception and would allow employers to deny coverage for other items and services to which they objected.
Senator Barbara A. Mikulski, Democrat of Maryland, said Republicans were attacking women’s health care as part of “a systematic war against women.”
Mr. Blunt offered the proposal as an amendment to a highway bill. Under the proposal, health insurance plans and employers could refuse to provide or pay for coverage of “specific items or services” if the coverage would be “contrary to the religious beliefs or moral convictions of the sponsor, issuer or other entity offering the plan.”
Kathleen Sebelius, the secretary of health and human services, urged the Senate to reject the proposal. “The Obama administration believes that decisions about medical care should be made by a woman and her doctor, not a woman and her boss,” Ms. Sebelius said.
*Click above link to continue reading. Please CLICK HERE to take 10 seconds to thank your senators for voting to protect women’s health & urge them to keep up the fight.

    womenaresociety:

    Senate Rejects Step Targeting Coverage of Birth Control

    The Senate on Thursday upheld President Obama’s birth control policy, voting to kill a Republican effort to let employers and health insurance companies deny coverage for contraceptives and other items they object to on religious or moral grounds.

    The 51-to-48 vote illustrated a sharp divide between the parties and brought to the Congressional forefront the social issues that have roiled the race for the Republican presidential nomination. Over four days of debate, Democrats accused Republicans of infringing on women’s rights and focusing on issues long settled while Republicans accused Democrats of threatening religious freedom and violating the Constitution.

    “The Senate will not allow women’s health care choices to be taken away from them,” said Senator Patty Murray, Democrat of Washington.

    The politically charged fight heated up last month after the Obama administration unveiled its policy requiring health insurance plans to offer free contraceptives for women — a rule that provoked furious criticism from Roman Catholic institutions and some other religious groups. The administration quickly offered a revision that would force the health insurers — not the institutions — to bear the cost.

    Still, Senate Republicans tried to seize on the uproar surrounding the administration rule and offered a Senate proposal that would allow a broad exemption for employers, framing it as a matter of conscience as much as contraception.

    “The president is trampling on religious freedom,” said Senator Mike Johanns, Republican of Nebraska.

    Democrats saw the issue tilting politically in their favor in recent days and forced the Senate vote even as some Republicans indicated unease about pressing the matter. One Republican, Senator Olympia J. Snowe of Maine, joined 48 Democrats and two independents in opposing the plan, days after she announced she was retiring from the Senate. Three Democratic senators — Bob Casey of Pennsylvania, Joe Manchin III of West Virginia and Ben Nelson of Nebraska — voted for the proposal, along with 45 Republicans. Mr. Casey and Mr. Manchin are up for re-election this year. Mr. Nelson is retiring.

    Despite the vote, Congress is not done with the contraception debate. Speaker John A. Boehner said Thursday that House Republicans also wanted to protect religious employers who object to the requirement for contraceptive coverage.

    “It’s important for us to win this issue,” Mr. Boehner said. He did not offer any details about a legislative path forward, but hinted that it would differ from the one tried by Senate Republicans.

    Illustrating the political power of the issue, Mitt Romney, the Republican presidential candidate, moved quickly on Wednesday to clarify a comment that he was against the Republican plan by Senator Roy Blunt, Republican of Missouri. Mr. Romney said that he had misunderstood the question and that he supported Mr. Blunt’s proposal. Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. weighed in on the issue during a visit to Iowa State University on Thursday, saying that the administration plan was “screwed up in the first iteration” but that the compromise was the correct approach.

    In the Senate, Democrats, defending the new health care law, said the Republican proposal went far beyond contraception and would allow employers to deny coverage for other items and services to which they objected.

    Senator Barbara A. Mikulski, Democrat of Maryland, said Republicans were attacking women’s health care as part of “a systematic war against women.”

    Mr. Blunt offered the proposal as an amendment to a highway bill. Under the proposal, health insurance plans and employers could refuse to provide or pay for coverage of “specific items or services” if the coverage would be “contrary to the religious beliefs or moral convictions of the sponsor, issuer or other entity offering the plan.”

    Kathleen Sebelius, the secretary of health and human services, urged the Senate to reject the proposal. “The Obama administration believes that decisions about medical care should be made by a woman and her doctor, not a woman and her boss,” Ms. Sebelius said.

    *Click above link to continue reading. Please CLICK HERE to take 10 seconds to thank your senators for voting to protect women’s health & urge them to keep up the fight.

    — 2 years ago with 41 notes
    #senators  #senate  #vote  #women's rights  #healthcare  #women's health  #controversy  #birth control  #contraception  #health insurance  #religion  #moral  #catholic  #olympia j snowe  #olympia snowe  #mitt romney  #joe biden  #barbara mikulski  #roy blunt  #kathleen sebelius  #obama  #obama administration  #patty murray 

    womenaresociety:

    fuckyeah-nerdery:

    Middle aged men explain why middle aged men know more about women’s health than women. I lul’d.

    I love Nick Offerman.

    — 2 years ago with 1083 notes
    #birth control  #funny or die  #misogyny  #nick offerman  #planned parenthood  #sexism  #sexist  #video  #women's health  #women's health experts  #reproductive health  #contraception 
    "A great effort has been made to make condoms more pleasurable for men, but you don’t hear about this same effort going toward reducing the negative impact of contraception on women’s sexual functioning."

    Nicole Smith, lead researcher on an Indiana University study that examines the sexual side effects of all hormonal forms of birth control. (via newsweek)

    This is relevant to… keeping me from going under the knife again soon.

    (via fuckyeahfeminists)

    — 2 years ago with 397 notes
    #birth control  #contraception  #women's health  #sexuality