Birth control is not a ‘hypothetical situation’


The last time Mitt Romney’s campaign ran into real trouble on contraception, it dispatched South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R) to argue, “Women don’t care about contraception…. The media wants to talk about contraception.”

Republican policymakers were, at the time, pushing legislation – at the state and federal level – to restrict access to birth control, but for Romney surrogates, the sensible response was to say contraception doesn’t matter.

Today, it happened again.

Kerry Healey, Romney’s lieutenant governor in Massachusetts, fresh off her borderline-comical turn in the post-debate spin room last night, sat down with msnbc’s Andrea Mitchell today, and the host asked questions Healey presumably expected, noting Romney’s support for the Blunt Amendment, for example.

Inexplicably, the Romney surrogate described the consequences of the candidate’s own proposals as “some hypothetical situation.” Healey added that even having a discussion about women being able to afford contraception is a “peripheral” issue.

This arrogant attitude is extraordinary. Under Romney’s preferred agenda, employers can end contraception coverage for their women employees, and millions of Americans would no longer be able to afford birth control.

Asked to defend this right-wing nonsense, the Romney campaign’s defense is that the question is irrelevant – as if the issue is so trivial, it’s not even worth their time.

If this is Team Romney’s attempt to appear in touch with the needs of working families, it’s likely to backfire.

Postscript: On a related note, Ed Gillespie said he was “wrong” last night to explain that Romney opposed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. For those keeping score at home, the Romney campaign, over the course of less than a day, has had no position on the law, been opposed to the law, and then supportive of the law.

War onWomen and Mitt Romney

Birth control is not a 'hypothetical situation'