Jess Chapman

I love it when the women get involved

In Fail of the Week on February 18, 2012 at 8:00 am

It’s time once again for The Future American’s FAIL OF THE WEEK! Every Saturday, I name a person or group who has spent the past seven days behaving in a particularly idiotic way. Since it’s my belief that idiocy knows no politics, nobody is safe.

This week’s fail was brought to you by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), now a two-time failure here at The Future American. But don’t worry, this isn’t about another politically motivated Oversight Committee vendetta against President Obama. . . . God. I really hope the Republicans get back to the economy soon; I’ve been talking like a hardcore Democrat for the past two weeks thanks to this reproductive nonsense, which, unbelievably, continued on Thursday. Believe me, I don’t feel good about that.

Anyway, Thursday was the day Issa convened a hearing on Obama’s rule for employers to provide free contraception to female workers, now complete with an exemption for religiously affiliated workers. The first five witnesses at the hearing were all male and all religious leaders. But that was just the first panel; the second included two women, one of whom happened to be a doctor. The three congressional Democrats who walked out of the hearing in protest missed that, and now, rightfully, look too self-righteous for their own good.

But that wasn’t the fail. No, that happened when Issa told Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), one of the walkers, that Georgetown Law student Sandra Fluke would not be permitted to testify because the debate wasn’t about “reproductive rights and contraception.” Fluke’s role would have been to provide insight on how any watered-down version of the rule might affect women. I’m skeptical of how much insight a law student could provide, but Issa was basically saying that any such testimony was irrelevant to the discussion.

See, that would have made sense if the rule in question concerned religious matters far broader than reproduction. Unfortunately for Issa, it’s at the very core of the rule he’s so angry about; there are parties to it other than the five religious leaders he brought in. (Wouldn’t everyone have gotten the picture if only two or three of them had spoken?) It’s very clear that this cross-section of the GOP has no clue what women’s concerns are, including Catholic women, and don’t want to try to get one.

I generally don’t believe that women in politics automatically bring a different perspective than a men, but anything concerning pregnancy is an exception for obvious reasons. I comfort myself with the knowledge that Independent women are more valuable than the Republicans know.

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  1. Honorable Idiotic Mention: Chris Christie? no?

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