Friday, February 10, 2012


It was inevitable that some backtracking would occur on the birth control access feature of the Affordable Care Act, and today the President offered a compromise. The compromise would require health insurance providers to offer birth control at no charge to employees of Catholic hospitals and universities, so that the Church would not have to pay for the coverage. We'll see if the fired-up right wing of the Church accepts the compromise, or chooses to go on a Crusade against provision of birth control generally. The latter course would further alienate women from the Church, and ultimately be a well-deserved disaster for it. The Rethugs will continue to play the issue cynically and with a healthy dose of deceit.

It will be interesting to see what happens to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, who oversaw the roll-out of the Affordable Care Act and allowed the Rethugs to control the message, and this hasty retreat on women's reproductive rights. Are these simply failures in public relations, or are they failures to gauge, plan for and counter the inevitable opposition from the right? Or both? Someone needs to be held accountable.

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