It is mind boggling to learn that Rep. Darrell Issa (R), the Chairman for Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, actually flat out declined to invite opposing views during a Capitol Hill hearing today about religious freedom and the Administration’s mandate that Health Insurers cover contraception.
Rep. Carolyn Maloney of New York (D) asked, “Where are the women?” criticizing Rep. Issa for wanting to ““roll back the fundamental rights of women to a time when the government thought what happens in the bedroom is their business.” Ranking committee member Rep. Elijah Cummings’(D-Md) criticized the Chairman as someone who is “promoting a conspiracy theory that the Federal Government is conducting a war against religion”.
According to the committee argument, the congressional hearing titled “Lines Crossed: Separation of Church and State. Has the Obama Administration Trampled on Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Conscience?” suggested that the Obama administration went too far with its government mandates forcing them to pay for contraception calling it ” an infringement on their religious beliefs” or “an assault against their freedom of conscience.”
So, Rep. Issa inviting an all men clergy from religious groups that don’t support the White House contraception stands while declining to invite some twenty four religious leaders who have released a statement supporting the Administration’s new health care policy to require insurance coverage of birth control without deductibles or co-pays.
Democrats sure were not happy about the exclusion of reputable women representatives from the Catholic Health Association who runs the Catholic hospitals and Catholic Charities, who support the Administration’s plan be excluded from the discussion. Sandra Fluke, a third-year Georgetown Law Center student, invited by Democrats and who was at the hearing was barred from testifying (read testimony here) at the hearing for a reason per Rep. Issa’s staff’s letter said, “As the hearing is not about reproductive rights but instead about the administration’s actions as they relate to freedom of religion and conscience, he believes that Ms. Fluke is not an appropriate witness.”
Well, judge for yourself and listen to what Ms. Fluke has to say and why it was important for Rep. Issa to silence the voice of this woman:
This is what the Republican Party has become. If there are any women Republicans out there voting against her own self interest, it is time to wake the hell up and smell the coffee before the Republican party makes raping a pregnant woman legally acceptable like the State of Virginia have just made it this week. While you are at it, read just a bit on the Affordable Care Act and what it does. You may just vote for Democrats in 2012 because Democrats are the party who are looking for women’s best interest.