By Robert Schlesinger |
Last week, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus called women's distrust of the Republican Party and their presumptive nominee, Mitt Romney, as fictional as a "war on caterpillars." The Republican Party would like to be let off the hook for its extreme policies on women's health, women's rights, and women's access to equal pay by complaining about the language people use to describe its policies. The fact of the matter is that no matter what you call the far-right policies of the GOP, women understand exactly what its agenda is and that Mitt Romney and the GOP can't be trusted to stand up for them.
This isn't just a one-off. Mitt Romney has called Roe v. Wade one of the darkest moments in Supreme Court history. He has vowed to "get rid of" Planned Parenthood. And, he supports the so-called "personhood" amendment that would criminalize in vitro fertilization and common forms of birth control.
He's gone further by declaring that on day one of his administration, he would repeal the Affordable Care Act. This would have serious and far-reaching consequences for women's healthcare in this country. Under President Obama's healthcare law, insurers will no longer be allowed to charge women up to 50 percent more than men for the same coverage, they won't be able to deny women with a pre-existing condition coverage, and they will now have access to preventive care like cancer screenings and contraception without a co-pay. This isn't about rhetoric. This is about dangerous positions that have real consequences for women and their families.
From pushing for equal pay for equal work to staunchly defending women's health, President Obama has proudly stood up for women across the country. If the Republican Party continues to push for policies that are dangerous for women, the GOP will only have itself to blame for losing support. Just ask Alaska Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski or Maine GOP Sen. Olympia Snowe, who have both criticized their party's stance on these issues. It has nothing to do with our language and everything to do with their policies.
About Simone Ward National Deputy Constituency Director and National Director of Women's Outreach at the Democratic National Committee
Sharon Day Co-chair of the Republican National Committee
Zerlina Maxwell Political Analyst and Contributing Writer for EBONY.com, theGrio.com, and Feministing.com
Stephanie Slade Project Director at the Winston Group
Jehmu Greene Owner of JSG Strategies