I cannot reply to comments, so this is for Tom.
You say that government has a role in regulation and labeling of product and I agree. But it doesn’t mandate the provision of free orange juice.
Insurance companies agree that contraception is cheaper than pregnancy. It may even be in their best interests to facilitate that cost savings by providing free product – but what about the precedent being set of the Executive being allowed to dictate to private industry that it must provide free product? Can/will that extend to other industries?
You say that the insurance companies would be able to compensate by charging higher premium – show me where that is in the compromise. In fact, the Executive has explicitly shifted the cost burden FROM the faith based employer AND the employee ONTO the private business. The whole point of the compromise is that the employer would NOT have to pay as it violates their conscience, and the employee would not have to pay as it violates the Sparkly Free Ethos of the new giveaway. And except for individual life/health politices, companies CANNOT charge more for a member of a health census that smokes, drives race cars, etc., and the carrier by law cannot disclose these behaviors. I was once pressured by a supermarket chain to reveal which of their employees had a heart condition that prevented them from purchasing a low cost plan – I explained that while the company could ask the questions to assess the risk/reward during underwriting, they could not tell the employer due to privacy laws but had to accept or reject the entire group and this person’s condition made it likely that there would be no profit on the plan.
As far as the argument goes about the Administration being able to require this because the cost of health insurance is deductible and therefore they provide a ‘subsidy’ – will they also be able to decide if you can remodel your kitchen because of the home mortgage deduction? Or announce that you cannot have more children because you are abusing the tax credit?
The whole ‘half the electorate’ thing? How many of those females are fertile, of child-bearing age, and active heterosexuals? You lose about half of all females when you look at it like that, let alone those who choose not to use contraception for health and religious reasons. BTW – those polls about ‘98%’ using? That’s 98% of Catholics, not the female population overall. As far as cost goes – up until 10 years ago, MOST women paid 100% out of pocket in Democrat-controlled Mass., for the entirety of their reproductive lives. That was why Planned Parenthood came into being, lack of health insurance coverage. Progressive men are a little late to the game with their support.
IMO, the Administration deliberately chose a divisive issue with red-herring dead ends about conscience and faith in order to make this power grab. And I will ask you what I always ask when progressives go on about the end justifying the means – how will you feel when President Cheney gets to make these mandates?
From KB – ‘The FDA does what exactly?’ It regulates drugs for content and safety, just like Tom’s Ag Dept. regulates the orange juice. How does that translate into free product?