Two weeks ago when Republican Rep. Darrell Issa held his House Oversight Committee hearing to "investigate" President Obama's new policy on contraception, he wouldn't allow Georgetown University law student Sandra Fluke to testify because she wasn't an "appropriate witness." Of course Issa didn't feel any women were appropriate as none were included in the hearing.
Fluke later testified at an unofficial House hearing, saying in part:
The cost of contraception created a significant financial burden — up to $3,000 over the course of law school — that prohibited one of her fellow students from obtaining hormonal contraception. Because of a medical issue, not having access to birth control ultimately resulted in her losing an ovary.
The full transcript of Fluke's testimony is here. It's well worth the read, especially for anyone who still doesn't understand that this is a woman's health issue.
Reacting to that testimony, the current unofficial "leader" of the Republican party, Rush Limbaugh feigned outrage at the cost issue, claiming that he, the taxpayer, was expected to finance the college "co-ed's" sex life. (Never mind that we're talking about private insurance where he thinks his tax dollars are going. Note also, Fluke is speaking of a friend's experience, not her own. But facts aren't Limbaugh's strong suit even if he cared to use them.) Upon further, deep analysis, (but not deep enough to remember her name) the famed big fat idiot excitedly labeled Ms. Fluke as a "slut" and a "prostitute:"
"What does it say about the college co-ed Susan [ sic ] Fluke, who goes before a congressional committee and essentially says that she must be paid to have sex? What does that make her? It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute. She wants to be paid to have sex. She's having so much sex, she can't afford the contraception. She wants you and me and the taxpayers to pay her to have sex. What does that make us? We're the pimps. The johns. That's right. We would be the johns. No! ... Pimp's not the right word. Okay, so she's not a slut. She's round-heeled. I take it back."
Well, there you go. Pay no attention to what you've heard about that hearing, Rush Limbaugh will tell you what really happened. After all, Nancy Pelosi was involved. Normally Nancy Pelosi and a good San Fransisco liberal joke would be all the explanation you need, but in an election year with a major GOP implosion and a new health care law that's kicking it even before it's been fully implemented, and he's got his work of fiction cut out for him.
Naturally his explanation is ludicrous fantasy: You show me someone who never sleeps due to working full time while paying their way through college and law school, but who isn't having sex 24-7 and I'll show you a slacker. And because you are having sex 24-7 and you occasionally have to eat something, BFI there says you're going to need that much more birth control. So let's assume you go with the pill, then you're going to need to buy it in bulk, because in Limbaugh's world there is no such thing as that little monthly dispenser nor one pill per day, or so it sounds.
Now, as any winger will tell you, there is a "work-around" for the high cost of 24-7 sex and birth control. It's supposedly even easier these days too, what with all the new innovations! What young girl didn't start out early on by earning that recreational abortion badge from the Girl Scouts, am I right? Fast forward a few years and now there are just so many more choices out there, what with drive through abortions, and that luxurious new Abortionplex! It's so awesome that even abortion foes can't help but rave about it! Of course if you don't go for the fast lane, well Rush may be right. You'll just have to go with the only option left to you. That's right: The Congressional Committee Extortion Slut. Show me the money and please don't make me get the coat hanger....
Sorry ladies, but you're on your own. That's the message according to Rush Limbaugh, the spokesman and apparently the leader of the Republican Party. It's all designed to distract from the fact that the Affordable Care Act is working, that people like it, and even when they tried to throw up yet another roadblock with the contraception issue, President Obama came up with a solution for that too. He's about solutions, they're about roadblocks.
When Darrell Issa held that hearing it was a waste of time, another thing Republicans do a lot of these days. He just wasted time on a non-issue under the guise of "religious freedom" knowing full well that had nothing to do with it. It was just another attempt to undermine the Affordable Care Act while using a wedge issue to do it. It was also another attack on women, their latest target. There's a good reason they wouldn't allow Sandra Fluke to speak at that hearing, and when she had the opportunity and the courage to do so later with Nancy Pelosi's help, the Republican party attacked her. They stood back and let Rush Limbaugh do their dirty work for them as they've done many times before, and you can see he was more than happy to do so. Just watch the video.
Yes, today the Republican party is willing to call a young woman a slut and a prostitute for the simple reason that she wants the right to good, affordable health care; health care that for some women may involve birth control.
You might think that Republicans would denounce or condemn Limbaugh's comments, but you would be wrong.
You could ask John Boehner about the comments....but you would have to find him first. You can almost picture Boehner sobbing in a corner somewhere, fearing the worst if he crossed Limbaugh. No, the closest anyone could get to asking Boehner was to ask Michael Steele what he thinks Boehner would say:
“The speaker obviously believes the use of those words was inappropriate, as is trying to raise money off the situation,” said a Boehner spokesman, Michael Steele.
Obviously? No, not obvious. What IS obvious is that Boehner is missing in action and not answering questions, but when he is maybe he could explain how referring to Ms. Fluke as a slut is ok, but raising funds off of such a thing is where he would draw the line?
What about Mitt Romney? Would you be surprised to hear that there have been two answers so far? Of course you wouldn't.
After an event in Bellevue, Washington, CNN asked Romney for a comment on Limbaugh who called Georgetown Law student Sandra Fluke a "slut" after she testified before Congress on the importance of insurance coverage of contraception.
The former Massachusetts governor was within a few feet of CNN's camera when he was asked the question. But Romney walked by without comment.
Romney once said if the truth hurt him politically, it wouldn't be honest of him to walk away. Seriously, you just can't make this stuff up.
Ok Mittens, another state, another question. Think you can get it right the second time?
“I'll just say this which is it’s not the language I would have used," Romney said. "I’m focusing on the issues I think are significant in the country today and that’s why I’m here talking about jobs and Ohio.”
Shorter Mitt: "Well, I didn't actually hear what Rush said....but "slut, prostitute?" No I definitely wouldn't have said that. Ann, could you bring me my thesaurus? Let's see here....whore.... tramp? No, a little harsh, how about....hooker, no..... oh hey, look here's one: promiscuous, or scarlet woman....say would you look at those trees...!
How would Newt Gingrich answer the question?
Newt Gingrich said President Obama acted “opportunistically” when he called law student Sandra Fluke to extend his support for the woman who had been called a “slut” and a “prostitute” by radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh.
“I think the president will opportunistically do anything he can,” Gingrich said after a rally in Hamilton, Ohio, according to ABC News.
As always Gingrich will answer a question no one asked while creating another non-issue that President Obama dealt with the wrong way. Newt finds it "opportunistic" that Obama would have the audacity to call and offer support to a woman who was called a slut for conveying the health care horror story of a friend. But then I guess Newt would find that opportunistic. After all he seized the opportunity to serve divorce papers to one of his former wives when she was in a hospital bed being treated for cancer. But yes Newt, just change the subject. That way everybody's happy, except for the sluts and their friends who lose ovaries, as far as Newt's concerned Rush is right on the money.
Ron Paul? Again he's consistent and his answer in long, and since this blog post is long enough already I'll save some time and edit it down: It was a crude choice of words and a political football over a choice that should be between the patient and her doctor.
And now I've saved the craziest for last: Rick Santorum:
"He's being absurd, but that's you know, an entertainer can be absurd," Santorum told CNN's Wolf Blitzer on Friday. "He's in a very different business than I am.
Absurd? This is the sanctimonious Santorum. Mr. Religious Fanaticism, Mr. Family Values. The guy who gives sermons rather than stump speeches and thinks he's running for Pope. The guy who will force his views of religion on the rest of us. He and only he knows what's right and what's wrong and yet he merely sighs and lets out a collective "meh" when one of God's children is labeled a slut?
Oh wait, birth control. Yeah, ok. Never mind.
So there you have it ladies. Rush Limbaugh has spoken, and the Republicans have all given him their blessing. In the name of religious freedom, we are all sluts now.
Just because Republicans are giving Limbaugh a pass that doesn't mean we have to. We don't have to give the Republican wing-nuts a pass either. There are at least a few ways to fight back.
You can click here to send an email to Rush Limbaugh's corporate sponsors and urge them to stop supporting his show. (Did I mention that he also expects sex videos from the women whose birth control his "tax dollars" are going to? Yeah, he's a pig. Happy emailing!) Several advertisers have already pulled theirs, but there are still holdouts:
Century 21 Real Estate LLC, ProFlowers, CARBONITE, Inc., American Forces Network, and Mission Pharmacal Company.
Think Progress is also monitoring the advertisers on Twitter. You can also go there for the latest information.
You can also click here to sign a petition to tell the GOP to condemn Rush Limbaugh for his actions.
And then there's this: Don't stay home in November! VOTE.