If you thought the tired, discredited "War on Women" meme was a thing of the past, think again. MSNBC.com is doing its best to keep it alive. Witness how they gave a platform today to Ilyse Hogue of the abortion-rights absolutist group NARAL Pro-Choice America.
"Congress to women: Drop dead" thundered the main-page teaser headline. "GOP leadership would rather see survivors of trafficking get no help at all than allow women to determine the help that is best for them," added the subheader.
In the piece itself, "Want to help women? Let survivors decide what’s best for them," Hogue placed all the blame for the holdup of anti-human trafficking legislation in the Senate on, you guessed it, pro-lifers -- even though it is Democrats beholden to the abortion-on-demand lobby that is filibustering the bill (emphasis mine):
The legislative language in question is the so-called Hyde Amendment, which since 1976 has isolated abortion care as the only form of health care that cannot be funded with taxpayer dollars. This puts abortion care out of reach of low income women on Medicaid, the people least able to provide financially for another child, as well as military servicewomen and Peace Corps volunteers.
Despite these obvious perverse effects, the Hyde Amendment is a perennial favorite among anti-choice legislators. Speaker John Boehner sweetened the bill to fix Medicare payments to doctors by adding funding for community health clinics, an important source of health care for our nation’s poor people. The catch? He made sure that Hyde language was in there even though, by all accounts, it was redundant and unnecessary.
Then, in a precedent-setting move, Republican leadership allowed language in the bill that would apply the Hyde amendment to a private fund established by fining traffickers. A Loyola School of Law study found that women who are trafficked are forced to “service” an average of thirteen men a day. Eighty percent of these women report being pregnant at least once during this coerced sex, and 20% report being pregnant five times or more.
Years of work went into getting legislation that acknowledges the real circumstances of these women’s lives and helps them move on. This work is now threatened by ideological extremists in the U.S. Senate. After all these women have been put through, these senators would once again deny them the freedom to decide what happens with their own bodies, and hence with the rest of their lives.
As we know from previous reporting, Senate Democrats voted in committee to advance this bill to the Senate floor, although it was abundantly clear the pro-life language was in the bill, and within the first few pages, nonetheless. "Too long; didn't read" seems to be a poor excuse for Democrats.
What's more, forbidding the spending of taxpayer dollars on abortion in no way prohibits women themselves or third parties from financing the procedure. Hogue's NARAL Pro-Choice America, for example, could foot the bill for bona fide victims of human trafficking if it so chose.
One last thing, as regard's the teaser headline particularly: Ilyse Hogue's job is making sure unborn baby girls (and boys) drop dead in the womb thanks to the scalpel or suction tube of a contract-killer known as an abortionist. She's entitled to her opinion, of course, but it's rather sick that MSNBC.com promotes her piece as front-page real estate, and that without an "opinion" tag, so it appears to be straight news to the less-than-discerning MSNBC regular.