Roundup: Insurance Lobby Wins Some, But Military Women Can Win Too


In the field of reproductive rights, you win some battles and you lose some. The struggle does make the victories seem sweet but I wonder why it’s got to be so darned hard all the time? Plus sometimes it seems for every step forward women make, someone wants to make us go back at the beginning. For example we had the happy
late-breaking
news last night
that Department of Defense will now stock emergency
contraception "at
all of its hospitals and health clinics around the world."
A great move
that took only 8 years since the Pentagon’s Pharmacy and Therapeutics
Committee, an advisory panel, first made such a recommendation.

Meanwhile in Colorado two state legislators had a great idea, let’s craft a bill that would expand insurance coverage of maternity care and contraception
to those who purchase health insurance individually, a mandate that 29 other states have. Great idea, right? Well the insurance
lobby managed to water down the bill.

Health
insurance lobbyists shuffled their papers and gazed at one another as Reps. Jerry Frangas and Beth McCann explained that they would amend the bill to
make it more friendly to the insurance industry in order to make sure it passed
through committee and onto the floor of the House.

"We need to take a step," McCann told the
Colorado Independent. "We can discuss further steps, but we need to get this
going so that women and families can at least have an option. We felt that
after speaking to members of the committee and representatives of the insurance
industry that we would be able to get the ball rolling if we didn’t mandate
[coverage] for every policy,"

The
bill would have required that all individual insurance plans in the state cover
maternity care and contraception, the way group plans do, but the amendment
altered the bill to demand that all insurance companies offer at least one plan
for individual policyholders that includes maternity care. Contraception is not
included in the present version of the bill. The new version passed out of the House Business Affairs
and Labor Committee with all 11 committee
votes.

Meanwhile, while Iowa
is considering a bill that could expand
the availability of free birth control for low-income women
, there is a
simultaneous movement to create a state constitutional
amendment redefining "personhood" to begin at conception
.

Sixteen
Iowa lawmakers – 15 Republicans and one Democrat – have begun a process that
could result in an amendment of the Iowa Constitution, but the focus isn’t
same-sex marriage. The proposed amendment calls for the state to recognize human
eggs as persons worthy of legal protection, effectively ending any access to
abortion and possibly to contraception.

The language introduced in Iowa
reads as follows:

The right to life is the paramount
and most fundamental right of every person. With respect to the fundamental and
inalienable rights of all persons guaranteed in this Constitution, the word
"person’ applies to all human beings, irrespective of age, health, function,
physical or mental dependency, or method of reproduction, whether in vivo or in
vitro, from the beginning of their biological development, including the
single-cell human embryo.

The statement was introduced as a
joint resolution to amend the Iowa Constitution. In order for the amendment to
become law it would need to be adopted in two separate sessions of the Iowa
legislature before being placed on the ballot for final ratification in a
public vote. The measure was introduced and sent to the House Committee on
State Government, where it was further referred to a subcommittee. There is no
reason to believe, given the current make-up of the Iowa legislature and the
committee reviewing the bill, that this measure will find a path to the chamber
floor – at least not during the current legislative session.

In Other News:
Those living around Atlanta will soon be seeing giant
billboards touting the "Black Genocide."

And the pro-choice groups in Virginia who are seeking at
pro-choice specialty license plate to be created by an act of the General
Assembly hasn’t
encountered any legislative resistance
… yet. Although the state’s new
attorney general sure
isn’t a fan.

February 5, 2010

Birth
Control Sabotage and Coercion by Teenage Boys- What I Think
 EmpowHer

Abortion-rights
supporters want specialty license plate
 Richmond Times Dispatch

Ignatieff
misleads on abortion
 Toronto Star

Illegal Abortions Korea Times

Focus on
the Family buys pre-game ad time for Super Bowl
 USA Today

How Sperm
Swim: A Clue for Male Contraception?
 TIME

Pro-life
Leaders Respond to Criticism for Backing ‘Pro-Choice’ Brown
 Lifesite

What
about ManCrunch?
 New Yorker

Study:
Iowa’s publicly funded family planning is cost-effective
 Media Newswire

 

February 4, 2010

Plans to speed
up child adoption
 BBC News

Mia
Farrow criticizes illegal Haiti adoptions
 Washington Post

Molecule
that controls the speed of sperm found by scientists
 Telegraph.co.uk

Pentagon
to offer emergency contraception abroad
 Washington Post

Sperm
sprint secrets ‘may lead to new contraception’
 BBC News

Colorado
maternity insurance bill moves out of committee
 The Colorado Independent

Does the
Pill Affect Mood or Libido?
 Modern Mom

Senate
Committee to Vote on Free Birth Control for Low-Income Iowans
 KCRG

SIMMONS:
Red ribbons meet red tape
 Washington Times

Theo
Caldwell: In search of common ground on abortion
 National Post

Anti-abortion group
targets black women with billboards
 Atlanta Journal Constitution

Arizona
Pro-Life Laws Limiting Abortions Receive Court Hearing on Friday
 LifeNews.com

Barack
Obama May Have Two Supreme Court Picks Soon, Would Affect Abortion
 LifeNews.com

Catholic
Pro-Life Group Presents President Bush Award for Opposing Abortions
 LifeNews.com

Costa
Rican presidential candidate reveals opposition to abortion
 Catholic News Agency

Pentagon
to stock health facilities with emergency contraception
 Washington Post

An
Advocacy Ad Elevates Interest in All the Ads
 New York Times

Liberal
Leader Ignatieff Responds to Firestorm of Criticism over Abortion Remarks
 Lifesite

ACLU
threatens suit for pro-choice car plate
 The Virginian-Pilot

Archbishop
Calls Pro-Life Movement ‘Persistent Answer To Violence Of Abortion’
 Georgia Bulletin

Canadian
Station Pulls Pro-Life Ad – Too "Graphic"
 Lifesite

Group
Launches Petition in Support of "Censored" Canadian Pro-Life Ad
 Lifesite

 

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  • crowepps

    The bill would have required that all individual insurance plans in the state cover maternity care and contraception, the way group plans do, but the amendment altered the bill to demand that all insurance companies offer at least one plan for individual policyholders that includes maternity care.

    If every individual plan includes maternity care and contraception, the costs of the prenatal care and birth would be spread to everyone and the cost of the policy would be reasonable for those who do get pregnant. If only specific plans include maternity care and contraception then those who purchase those policies will pay a much higher premium to cover the extra costs likely to be incurred by the self-selecting group who foresee needing that care.

     

    If women having babies is ‘vital to the survival of society’ it seems fair to spread the cost among the entire pool. If womens pregnancies are individual responsibility and society neither wishes to encourage or discourage it (or butt into the decisions), then having them individually bear the costs is fair.

     

    It is totally illogical to simultaneously assert that women have a ‘responsibility to society’ to produce children and that women have a ‘responsibility to the survival of the fetus’ and simultaneously structure these costs in a way that makes it more expensive for women on the grounds that there’s no societal obligation involved. Government and people in general need to make up their minds.