Saturday, January 16, 2010

Second page of rape mailer is correct

[ Coakley's campaign didn't make the mailer, but one page of it is correct anyway. ]

The second page is substantially correct (except perhaps for the fine print which I can't read).

"Scott Brown would allow hospitals to ban emergency contraception birth control even after women are raped."

His 2005 amendment did allow a hospital to refer all rape victims wanting emergency contraception 'to another facility'.

"sponsoring a law to let hospitals turn away rape victims in need of emergency contraception"

That is what his 2005 amendment allowed: refer 'to another facility.'

The text in the image may be misleading about the time frame if it is referring only to Brown's failed 2005 amendment. If Brown is currently sponsoring such a law, I haven't heard about it.

The picture is quite appropriate imo. It shows a woman in a hospital gown and wheel chair who would have difficulty and discomfort being transferred 'to another facility.' Actually the picture understates the mailer's case. It might have shown the woman on an x-ray table or in a hospital bed connected to tubes and in traction. No matter the woman's condition, per Brown's amendment the hospital could still insist that if she wanted a morning after pill she would have to be taken 'to another facility.' In fact of course this means she would be confined in the first hospital with no access to the morning after pill till she was well enough to get out, by which time it would be too late.

A 'rape' mailer not written by Coakley's campaign (nor by the Dems either?)

Politico posted about an 'over the top' rape flier at

One link from Politico leads to Sargent's blog at
h/ no w
which says:
Meanwhile, the state GOP sends over a statement ripping the Coakley campaign (which didn’t author the memo) as “negative,” “flailing,” and “malicious.”

Poltico's earlier source link, "Via Sargent" leads here:
h/ no w
where two pages of the ad are shown. The blog says that the ad was "paid for by the Massachusetts Democratic Party" but I have not seen any admission from the MA Dem Party or any evidence that it really was.

If the GOP sent it to the press, and the GOP benefits from it, then the most likely suspect for printing it is the GOP themselves.

The first page of the mailer is so far out that no one could take it seriously. For the GOP to pretend to take it seriously is ... suspicious. ;-)

ETA: Hm, the second page is more accurate. Maybe it was just some frat kids who are sincere about not wanting rape victims to get pregnant.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Debunking a crazy story

Here's an answer to a crazy story going around about Coakley and an old case where she had to try several times to get an indictment. I'll put it as a comment to this post.

Coakley against Stupak

there are important distinctions between what was passed in the House and what was passed in the Senate. [...] the House provision would effectively bar any insurance plan accepting government subsidies from covering elective abortions. The Senate bill, on the other hand, would allow such insurers to sell plans covering abortions, but would require women to pay for that portion of the coverage separately.

This is the key passage from the long letter I posted yesterday from Coakley's campaign.

House version vs Senate version

Here is a letter from Martha Coakley's campaign explaining the difference between the House bill (which she rejected) and the Senate bill (which she "reluctantly" accepted):

Thank you for being in touch with the campaign, and for sharing your thoughts on health care reform. It is true that Martha would reluctantly support the Senate healthcare bill. As a feminist and a
person committed to true reform with a public option and one that does not compromise women’s rights, she certainly understands your disappointment in this decision. However, she is unwilling to let Republican obstructionism thwart reform altogether. She has long said that she would vote for a reform bill only if it greatly expands coverage, improves quality and contains costs. While far from perfect, Martha believes the Senate bill takes significant steps toward
reaching these goals. She understands that the fight for a better healthcare system will not end with the January vote. Rather, once the bill is passed, Martha will continue fighting for the progressive improvements that we agree would achieve the most affordable and comprehensive coverage for all Americans.

To your comment, Martha finds the abortion language in the Senate bill troubling. As Attorney General, she fought hard to ensure a woman’s right to choose, defending legislation that would create and expand
buffer zones around reproductive healthcare facilities and, earlier this year, filing lawsuit challenging Bush administration provider conscience regulations that jeopardized a woman’s ability to access reproductive healthcare services. That said, there are important
distinctions between what was passed in the House and what was passed in the Senate. As you note, the House provision would effectively bar any insurance plan accepting government subsidies from covering
elective abortions. The Senate bill, on the other hand, would allow such insurers to sell plans covering abortions, but would require women to pay for that portion of the coverage separately. While this
is a disappointing, added administrative burden, the Senate bill will still allow people to buy this coverage, provided that they pay for the portion covering abortions separately.

Martha understands that a much better bill can be imagined, but she is unwilling to block reforms that Democrats and other progressives have sought for decades. We hope this information will change your mind about the upcoming election, and you will decide to vote on January 19th.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Ken Pittman: Right, if you are a Catholic, and believe what the Pope teaches that any form of birth control is a sin. ah you don't want to do that.

Martha Coakley: No we have a seperation of church and state Ken, lets be clear.

Ken Pittman: In the emergency room you still have your religious freedom.

Martha Coakley: The law says that people are allowed to have that. You can have religious freedom but you probably shouldn't work in the emergency room.


And Coakley is damn right!
Abortion takes stage in Senate race
Coakley’s ad, released Monday night, accuses Brown of resisting tougher Wall Street oversight and favoring Bush-era tax cuts that favored the wealthy. [....]

Coakley, who is trying to become the first female US senator from Massachusetts, has made women’s issues a strong component of her campaign. Yesterday morning, she had five surrogates hold a press conference at the headquarters of the Massachusetts Women’s Political Caucus. Coakley, however, was not at the event.

“He seeks to erode our reproductive rights,’’ said Christina Knowles, state director for the Massachusetts Chapter of the National Organization for Women.

The 2005 amendment that Brown sponsored in the state Senate would have allowed a physician, nurse, or any other employee to deny rape victims an emergency contraceptive if it “conflicts with a sincerely held religious belief.’’ The facility would have had to have someone else who could administer the contraceptive or refer the victim to another facility at no additional cost to the patient.

The amendment, which did not pass, was attached to a bill that he ultimately voted for, which required emergency rooms to provide the contraceptives to rape victims.

In Coakley’s latest ad, a narrator says, “Brown even favors letting hospitals deny emergency contraception to rape victims.’’

Brown and his supporters have declined to discuss the underpinnings of his amendment, instead trying to focus on the fact that he supported the overall legislation. He also voted to override a veto by Governor Mitt Romney.

“This is the message: the message is that Scott Brown was behind that legislation and voted for it in 2005,’’ Angela Davis, cochairwoman of Women for Brown, said yesterday.

Brown has also declined to discuss his amendment proposal.

“It’s irrelevant; it’s a red herring,’’ he told reporters after Monday night’s debate, as an aide cut off further questions.

On WCVB-TV last night, he said he could not recall whether he had actually filed that amendment, although Senate records clearly say he did.