Looks like us gals won’t have to keep an aspirin between our knees after all, because the Blunt amendment, introduced by the contraceptive-hating Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), has been mercifully tabled by the U.S. Senate. The amendment, which would have overridden President Obama‘s mandate that employers must provide birth control (because, you know, it’s basic health care) was tabled today by a narrow margin of just 51-48.
Much of the discussion on the Senate floor (and there was a lot) leading up to this vote was eye-rollingly-absurd–mostly because a.) it was a lot of men talking about/for women and their rights (duh! They know what’s best!), and b.) the amendment itself, which would allow employers to decide whether or not women could have coverage for birth control, was so ridiculousl. As Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said yesterday, “this measure would force women to surrender control of their own health decisions to their bosses. That concept, it is not merely quaint or old-fashioned. It is dangerous and it is wrong.”
However, there were also some pretty excellent statements made in favor of women. Here’s awesome piece of testimony from Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) during this morning’s debate, courtesy of Men who Trust Women:
When it comes to women, they don’t get rights. They get restrictions… I have five daughters and eight granddaughters, and the one thing I worry about more than anything else is their health. I like to see their happy faces. I like to see them feeling good… So I want them to have doctors making decisions, not some employer who has a self-righteous moral view that he wants to impose on my daughter, my granddaughter, my wife. Nuh uh. On our side of the aisle, we believe that women are capable of making their own healthcare decisions.
This vote was a little too close for comfort–proving that our uteruses are still a platform for politics on all sides. Oh, and if you haven’t watched this video of “birth control experts” from yesterday, you absolutely must. That’s sort of how a lot of the pro-Blunt testimony felt.
Image: Funny of Die’s panel of experts