Romney Calls Contraception a Gift, But the U.N. Begs to Differ

The XX Factor
What Women Really Think
Nov. 15 2012 1:10 PM

Romney Calls Contraception a "Gift" Just As the U.N. Declares It a Right

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Mitt Romney does not have any presents for you.

Photo by EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images

Will Saletan here at Slate wrote an excellent piece recapping Romney's latest encounter with his mortal enemy, the recording device. Romney, while speaking to his disappointed donors yesterday, was recorded blaming his loss on the teeming masses with all their incessant demands for wanting extravagant luxuries that can only be properly handled by their social betters, such as health care and the right to live in the same country they grew up in.

Amanda Marcotte Amanda Marcotte

Amanda Marcotte is a Brooklyn-based writer and DoubleX contributor. She also writes regularly for the Daily Beast, AlterNet, and USA Today. Follow her on Twitter.

I'm particularly interested in how angry Romney is that people want health care benefits in exchange for the insurance premiums they pay: 

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With regards to the young people, for instance, a forgiveness of college loan interest was a big gift. Free contraceptives were very big with young, college-aged women. And then, finally, Obamacare also made a difference for them, because, as you know, anybody now 26 years of age and younger was now going to be part of their parents’ plan, and that was a big gift to young people.

The conservative obsession with requiring women to pay twice over for their contraception—once when they pay for their insurance coverage and again at the pharmacy counter—is getting comical at this point. And as if it heard Romney's siren call to rich, right wing nuts, the United Nations, in direct opposition to the losing candidate's whining, declared this week that contraception access is a universal human right. The U.N. Population Fund is making this belief part of its mission, explaining why in terms that are distinctly unsexy: 

"Family planning has a positive multiplier effect on development," Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin, executive director of the fund, said in a written statement. "Not only does the ability for a couple to choose when and how many children to have help lift nations out of poverty, but it is also one of the most effective means of empowering women. Women who use contraception are generally healthier, better educated, more empowered in their households and communities and more economically productive. Women's increased labor-force participation boosts nations' economies."

Translated into right wing-ese: "Trollops around the world want an all-you-can-screw buffet and they want it to be free."

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