More Dispatches From The War On Women

Ken AshfordWomen's IssuesLeave a Comment

The Republican establishment has seemed more concerned with de-humanizing women than it does with winning the fall election. After Virginia passed its modified ultrasound requirement for abortion access, Republican-controlled state governments in Arizona and Pennsylvania put forward a set of absurd invasions of privacy that smack of the same big-government tyranny that they claim to be so aggressively opposed to.

In Arizona, a bill working its way through the state legislature would require women to prove to their employerthat they were taking contraceptives for the purpose of treating a medical condition if they want insurance to cover the cost, potentially allowing the employer to fire women who take birth control for the purpose of preventing pregnancy.

In Pennsylvania, Republicans are pushing a measure that would require doctors to perform an ultrasound, provide two copies of the image, and play and describe the fetus' heartbeat in detail before a woman can have an abortion.

While the furor over mandated trans-vaginal ultrasounds led the Virginia bill to specify that the requirement was only for the less invasive "jelly on the belly" ultrasound, the Pennsylvania bill does not make such a specification. This is notable because in the early stages of pregnancy a trans-vaginal ultrasound is required to obtain an image. Despite opening the door for state-mandated rape, the Republican governor of Pennsylvania, Tom Corbett, explained why the requirement isn't that big of a deal: "You just have to close your eyes."