The Sexist

Obama Lobbies to Drop Family Planning From Stimulus Bill

In a major bummer, feminist centrist President Barack Obama has personally asked Democrats in Congress to drop the family planning provision in the proposed stimulus bill, the Associated Press reports. The speculation is that Obama is looking to crack down on the bill in order to fulfill his campaign promise to look out for the interests of the Republicans who did not vote for him instead of the women who did.

Let's unpack this very uniter-not-divider decision on Obama's part:

Feminist: Under the provision, "states no longer would be required to obtain federal permission to offer family planning services—including contraceptives—under Medicaid, the health program for the low-income."

Centrist: "The provision has emerged as a point of contention among Republicans, who criticize it as an example of wasteful spending that would neither create jobs nor otherwise improve the economy."

Thanks, Obama, for lobbying against the waste incurred by ensuring that all Americans have equal access to medical care regardless of gender or class, especially in these tough economic times. Just another example of what it looks like to finally have a mainstream feminist President.

Photo by blmurch

  • Confused

    the most interesting part about this whole scuffle isn't so much that obama is perhaps failing to live up to some feminist standard, but that no one in the democratic party can manage to explain how family-planning services help stimulate the economy to the thick-headed republicans. here, it's simple: women/couples avoid having children when they aren't ready and as a result can continue getting an education and/or making progress in their field of choice. basically, they can contribute to the economy rather than be forced to go on welfare (thus straining the economy) because they couldn't afford birth control and/or were denied access because a provider's "morals" took precedence. while the provision may not create jobs (but it could), it offers women the chance not just to be part of the work force but to have more agency over what kind and how much work they will be doing. not to mention the choice to have some sex (baby-free) in the meantime.

  • Amanda Hess

    thanks for the analysis, Confused. I think that by failing to push the matter Obama's failed on the feminist front, and you're right---who couldn't understand the link here?