But What About the Base, Mr. President? Maloney Gets Answer on Adminstration’s Support for Birth Control

Scott Swenson

It took more than a year and was done in such a way as to garner as little attention as possible, but President Bush finally gave a clear answer to a simple question ... does he favor birth control? Rep. Carolyn Maloney asked that question, along with Congressional colleagues, and reporters in the White House Press Corps, and our friends at Birth Control Watch, for more than one year. The response?

It took more than a year and was done in such a way as to garner as little attention as possible, but President Bush finally gave a clear answer to a simple question … does he favor birth control? Rep. Carolyn Maloney asked that question, along with Congressional colleagues, and reporters in the White House Press Corps, and our friends at Birth Control Watch, for more than one year. The response?

A letter from a Department of Health and Human Services official on behalf of the president conveyed the administration’s support for “the availability of safe and effective products and services to assist responsible adults in making decisions about preventing or delaying conception.”

This is sure to anger his social conservative base, whose war on contraception has come out of the shadows, and who are already upset with how poorly the administration is treating them and are considering sitting out this election.

Contraception is hardly controversial in mainstream America, as the vast majority of people are comfortable with the wide array of choices they can make to best fit the life and family decisions each family must make. That common ground makes it all the more obvious just how far out of the mainstream social conservatives are and have been on this and other issues.

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But the larger question really is, if it takes the President more than one year to figure out if he supports birth control — is there any hope for resoltion of more complex issues?

And if he supports birth control, why not make it more accessible by supporting what all the evidence the FDA has before it suggests, and many other countries already do, and make Emergency Contraception available over-the-counter?

We've been waiting a long time for answer on that one too Mr. President.

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