Martha Coakley has hammered Scott Brown relentlessly with the claim that Brown wanted to permit hospitals to deny emergency contraception to rape victims. As Coakley surely knows, that claim is false.

I examined the language of Brown’s proposed amendment in a prior post. That amendment provided a “religious belief” exemption to the law requiring that hospitals provide such contraception, consistent with state anti-discrimination law. But Brown’s amendment also required that the hospital have a plan in place for the victim to get the emergency contraception from some other provider at no extra cost.

Coakley also is being disingenuous because, as I detailed in my prior post, Coakley supports the Senate health care bill which contains an even broader exemption protecting health care providers who do not want to provide abortion-related services or referrals for such services. That exemption is broad enough to include refusing to provide abortion-related services to rape victims.

Here is the language in section 1302(a)(3) of the bill (at page 125) passed by the Senate on December 24 (emphasis mine), which Coakley says she supports:

PROVIDER CONSCIENCE PROTECTIONS.—No individual health care provider or health care facility may be discriminated against because of a willingness or an unwillingness, if doing so is contrary to the religious or moral beliefs of the provider or facility, to provide, pay for, provide coverage of, or refer for abortions.

Interestingly, Coakley must not have read the Senate health care bill, because in her controversial interview Ken Pittman from WBSM in Massachusetts yesterday, Coakley said the following:

Q. Would you pass a health care bill that had conscientious objector towards certain procedures including abortion?

A. I don’t believe that would be included in the health care bill, I don’t understand exactly what the question is.


Coakley’s attacks on Brown show two things.

First, Coakley is willing to play politics with rape by twisting Brown’s position. Second, Coakley is ignorant as to what is in the Senate health care bill she supports.

Not a good combination.

Update: Here is the type of mailer being used by Coakley supporters (the Massachusetts Democratic Party) (original image here):

Related Posts:
Does Coakley Oppose Care for Rape Victims?

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