Union Building (University of Texas at Austin)

Governor: Pregnant Women, Breast Cancer Patients Are Free Health Care Moochers

The absurdity in this sort of thinking tells me that many GOP men say they are anti-gay but their disdain for women makes me wonder…

Think Progress

Pennsylvania Republicans have decided against expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, arguing that covering more low-income residents would cost the state too much money. But last week, Gov. Tom Corbett (R) went a step further, telling a local news station that poor residents who are already enrolled in the program, including pregnant women and breast cancer patients, are receiving too much free care and should pay into the system.

“What I hear all the time coming out of the administration in Washington is that it’s the working poor [who benefit from Medicaid],” Corbett told WTAE, a local ABC affiliate, on Saturday. “Yes it is working, but you should be investing five, ten dollars in co-pay to understand that you go to to the hospital or the doctors, you just can’t keep going and going and going and think everything is going to be covered. You have to know that you have some interest in what’s going on.” Watch it:

Pennsylvania’s Department of Public Welfare website has a dedicated webpage to “Copayment Information for Medical Assistance Recipients,” which explains that while children, pregnant women, and breast cancer patients, among others, don’t pay the fees, many beneficiaries do contribute for the services they receive. Corbett appears to suggest that the exempt enrollees are abusing the free services and that everyone should pay more for health care.

In 2012, Corbett had to shelve a plan that would have required “thousands of families to help pay for Medicaid coverage for children with autism and other disabilities.”

 

National Ads Suspended on The Rush Limbaugh Show

This news has been around for almost 24 hours but after reading about it in detail, I think it’s another win for Ms. Sandra Fluke and women everywhere…

Crooks & Liars

Lawrence O’Donnell had the editor of Radio-Info.com, Tom Taylor, on to discuss this unusual move in the wake of the Sandra Fluke debacle, aka “Slutgate.” Taylor sees this as a cooling off period as Premiere Networks plans their next move:

TAYLOR: The whole temperature level of this thing is something that the syndicator and Rush himself would like to bring down. And as you say, that’s why Rush had a round of golf today.

via Think Progress:

Radio-Info.com reports that Premiere Networks, which syndicates the Rush Limbaugh show, told its affiliate radio stations that they are suspending national advertising for two weeks. Rush Limbaugh is normally provided to affiliates in exchange for running several minutes of national advertisements provided by Premiere each hour. These ads called “barter spots.” These spots are how Premiere makes its money off of Rush Limbaugh and other shows it syndicates.

But without explanation, Premiere has supended these national advertisements for two weeks. Radio-Info.com calls the move “unusual.” The development suggests that Rush Limbaugh’s incessant sexist attacks on Sandra Fluke have caused severe damage to the show.

From the memo:

Attention Traffic Managers of Premiere News/Talk Affiliates:
We are suspending the requirement to run barter spots for two weeks, March 12th and March 19th, for our News/Talk affiliates only.

Please replace/re-traffic any Premiere barter spots immediately. Contractual requirements to run barter spots are being suspended for these two weeks only. Replace them with Lifelock and Lear Financial or a local spot of your choice.

Think Progress have also reported that 140 sponsors have now requested their ads no longer appear on the Limbaugh Show.

Virginia Poised To Enact ‘State-Sponsored Rape’ Law Forcing Women To Be Vaginally Probed Before Abortions

Rachel Maddow has been discussing this for the past few days.  She actually commented on how the mainstream media was not reporting on this horrific development in Virginia.

In a word, the Virginia  legislators’ proposal is outrageous!

Think Progress

Earlier this month, a bill requiring women to receive an ultrasound before they can receive an abortion passed the Virginia senate, and it recently cleared a state house committee with an overwhelming majority. As Dahlia Lithwick explains, the effect of this bill would be to force most women to undergo a stunningly invasive procedure for no medical reason whatsoever. “Because the great majority of abortions occur during the first 12 weeks, that means most women will be forced to have a transvaginal procedure, in which a probe is inserted into the vagina, and then moved around until an ultrasound image is produced.”

In case Lithwick’s description doesn’t completely drive home what this means, here is a depiction of the procedure that women would be forced to endure under the Virginia bill:

Simply put, it is difficult to distinguish a law requiring women to be vaginally penetrated by a long metal object from state-sponsored rape. Worse, discussions among lawmakers leave little doubt that its supporters understood just what they were trying to write into law — they just didn’t care. As an unnamed lawmaker told a fellow Virginia delegate, a woman already consented to being “vaginally penetrated when they got pregnant.”

UPDATE

A previous version of this post attributed the quote about women consenting to vaginal penetration to Del. C. Todd Gilbert (R). That was an error. Gilbert said that “in the vast majority of these cases, [abortions] are matters of lifestyle convenience.” A different lawmaker suggested that women who consent to sex also consent to vaginal probing.

Congressman Posts Satirical Attack On Planned Parenthood From The Onion As News

How dense  DUMB can this “politician” be?

Think Progress

Fool him once, shame on you. Fool him once with a widely circulated and obviously fake story  from satirical newspaper The Onion that was published nine months ago? Yeah, that’s all on him.

Congressman John Fleming (R-LA) is going to have a rough news cycle after his office posted a link  to an outrageous story about Planned Parenthood’s intentions to build an $8 billion “abortionplex,” complete with shopping mall, movie theater and three-story night club. It’s a laughable commentary on the outrageous charges that anti-choice groups use to attack Planned Parenthood, from one of the finest purveyors of satire, but the joke appears to have been lost on Fleming.

“More on Planned Parenthood, abortion by the wholesale,” wrote Rep. Fleming (or more likely an overzealous staffer) before linking to the post. Just hours after the link was posted, Rep. Fleming’s office deleted the post, but not before the blog Literally Unbelievable  grabbed a screenshot:

Getting duped by false stories in The Onion is a common occurrence, as Literally Unbelievable demonstrates. But rarely does it happen to someone so public. And adding another layer of humor to the incident, the story Fleming posted is nine months old and was already a viral Internet phenomenon: several fake Yelp reviews  of the abortionplex were published, and the story was the basis  for Literally Unbelievable in the first place.

Fleming has been a punch line before. Think Progress reported in September that Fleming complained that he and his family struggled to live on an annual income of $400,000, more than enough to qualify Fleming as a member of the 1 percent.

Santorum To Rape Victims: ‘Make The Best Out Of A Bad Situation’

The absurdity from the far-right wing of the GOP is astounding…

Think Progress

Standing steadfast as the most socially right-wing candidate in the GOP presidential field, Rick Santorum has repeatedly touted his extreme anti-choice position, which dictates that abortion should be uniformly illegal, even in cases of rape or incest. He even suggested that physicians who provide abortions to such victims should be criminally charged.

Last Friday, CNN’s Piers Morgan asked Santorum to clarify his reasoning behind such a callous position. Insisting that “it’s not a matter of religious values,” Santorum explained that sexual assault victims should “accept this horribly created” pregnancy because it is “nevertheless a gift in a very broken way” and that, when it comes down to it, a victim just has “to make the best out of a bad situation“:

SANTORUM: Well, you can make the argument that if she doesn’t have this baby, if she kills her child, that that, too, could ruin her life. And this is not an easy choice. I understand that. As horrible as the way that that son or daughter and son was created, it still is her child. And whether she has that child or doesn’t, it will always be her child. And she will always know that. And so to embrace her and to love her and to support her and get her through this very difficult time, I’ve always, you know, I believe and I think the right approach is to accept this horribly created — in the sense of rape — but nevertheless a gift in a very broken way, the gift of human life, and accept what God has given to you. As you know, we have to, in lots of different aspects of our life. We have horrible things happen. I can’t think of anything more horrible. But, nevertheless, we have to make the best out of a bad situation.

Watch it:

The problem with Santorum’s sense of humanity is that it doesn’t seem to extend to the victim. The emotional and physical trauma endured during and after a sexual assault often leaves a woman feeling robbed of any control over her own body and welfare. Robbing a woman of the choice to decide what to do with such “horribly created” consequences only contributes to the victim’s trauma.

What’s more, Santorum’s argument forces a woman in these circumstances to share his religious beliefs and “accept what God has given to [her.]” A woman may very well share his belief and decide to carry the pregnancy to the term, but the fundamental point is that that should be her choice — not the government’s, and certainly not Santorum’s.