Top Ten MT GOP Attacks on Women's Health
National political observers have coined the term "War on Women" to describe Republican attacks on women's health, ranging from plans to block access to contraception to massive cuts to cancer screening services.
But here in Montana, Republicans' War on Women is far from a recent development. In Congress, Dennis Rehberg has a long record irresponsible decisions on women's health, and Republicans in the state legislature have been with him every step of the way, even going so far as to compare women to animals. (Yes, really.)
To bring the story home, here are Montana Republicans' Top Ten most extreme attacks on women's health:
10. In Washington, Congressman Rick Hill voted multiple times to gut funding for access to contraception [Roll Call 290, HR4101, July 16, 1998 + Roll Call 493, HR4104, October 7, 1998 + Roll Call 494, HR4104, October 7, 1998].
9. Congressman Rehberg has earned the support of Foster Fries, the billionaire donor who said women use "asprin between their knees" as birth control.
8. Republican legislators pushed a bill to force women to view ultrasounds. Women's health advocates called the measure an "offensive intrusion."
7. Congressman Rehberg has been exposed by women's health advocates for not understanding how funding for women's health services works .
6. Congressman Rehberg has voted against the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which aims to make sure women are paid equally with men. [Vote 768, 7/31/07; Vote 37, 1/27/09; CQ Votes]
5. State Rep. Keith Regier compared pregnant women to "preg-tested" cattle during a discussion about family planning.
4. During one of his Congressional Campaigns, Rick Hill attacked his opponent Nancy Keenan for being a single woman without children, though Keenan was unable to have children due to health reasons.
3. Congressman Rehberg wrote two bills in the last year that would have completely ended funding for Title X, which helps women access preventative care like cancer screenings.
2. When law student Sandra Fluke testified in opposition to plans to block access to contraception, state Rep. Krayon Kerns compared her to to a breeding dog.
1. Congressman Hill and Congressman Rehberg both want to let women pay higher health insurance premiums than men.
(For his part, Congressman Rehberg voted to overturn the law that prohibits insurance companies from charging women more for health care than men in the state legislature in the 1980s. [3r, HB 519, 2/18/87, House Final Status; and 1987 Women's Lobbyist Fund News] Congressman Hill used to profit off insurance premiums as an insurance company executive.)