NOT BREAKING: Marco Rubio And Jeb Bush Still Out Of Touch On Women’s Health Issues

Frenemies (maybe just enemies now) Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush still stand together in at least one area of the 2016 race — they’re both terrible for women. Rubio and Bush epitomize the GOP’s out of touch stance on women’s health issues. Yesterday on Meet the Press, Jeb Bush said he’s okay with exceptions for the life of the mother, but not the health.

 

Unfortunately for Bush, his former mentee has him beat on extremism. Rubio is one of the worst in the field on a woman’s right to choose. Rubio is against abortion in cases of rape, incest, or to save the life of the mother.

 

Jeb has been heavily criticized for his awful stances on women’s health, but when it comes to abortion, Marco Rubio is even more out of touch. And these are the “establishment picks.” It’s safe to say: the GOP’s War on Women 2.0 is in full effect.

 

Rubio On Women’s Health

 

Exceptions

 

Politifact: “Marco Rubio Opposes Rapes, Incest Abortion Exception” Is “Mostly True.” According to Politifact, “[Jennifer] Granholm said Rubio opposes abortion ‘even in the case of rape and incest.’ The record suggests Rubio has staked out a slightly more nuanced position. Rubio is staunchly anti-abortion and has suggested he personally opposes abortion in cases of rape and incest, but he has supported abortion legislation that include those exceptions. Rubio says he supports legislation that makes abortion more rare. Granholm’s statement is accurate but needs clarification. We rate it Mostly True.” [Politifact, 10/25/15]

 

Asked If He Believed In Abortion Exceptions For “Rape, Incest, Mother’s life?” Rubio Said “I Believe And I’ve Always Advocated That Life Begins At Conception.” “Sean Hannity:  Exceptions on abortion – rape, incest, mother’s life?  Marco Rubio:  I believe that human life is valuable irrespective of the circumstances of its creation and deserves the protection of our law.  If I’m president and the only bill that can pass is one that has exceptions, that means we’re still going to save millions of lives, but I personally believe and I’ve always advocated that life begins at conception and all human life is worthy of protection.” [“Hannity,” Fox News, 4/13/15]

 

Abortion Bans

 

2015: Rubio Supported A National Ban On Abortions After 20 Weeks Of Pregnancy. According to Politico, “Republicans are more united than they have been in years on a national strategy to roll back abortion rights, using state legislatures and the new GOP Congress to push for banning the procedure after 20 weeks of pregnancy — a platform that also has the backing of the party’s presidential candidates. […] And eight major potential Republican presidential hopefuls are on board with the national ban, cementing the party’s abortion plank long before primary season. Besides Bush and Paul, that list includes Sens. Marco Rubio of Florida and Ted Cruz of Texas, Govs. Mike Pence of Indiana and Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum and former Gov. Mike Huckabee of Arkansas. Huckabee and Bush are the two candidates who have taken the most concrete steps toward running.” [Politico, 1/12/15]

 

Planned Parenthood

Opposed Funding Planned Parenthood, And Voted To Defund It

2011: Rubio Stated That He Would Defund Planned Parenthood. While appearing on Fox News, when asked about defunding Planned Parenthood Rubio said, “Some of my colleagues here that this program can’t be touched, that somehow it can’t be on the table is absurd. I don’t care what they do. […] We simply can’t afford to continue to fund things like this. […] I’m going to vote to defund it. And I have problems with what Planned Parenthood does and what the aim of the organization is. And it’s not their stated aim, it’s what they actually do.” [Fox News, 4/14/11]

 

Rubio Voted Twice To Eliminate Funding for Planned Parenthood

 

2011: Rubio Voted For A Bill To Defund Planned Parenthood. In April 2011, Rubio voted for prohibiting any funds appropriated in the recently-passed bill funding the government through the end of fiscal year 2011 from being made available to Planned Parenthood or any of its affiliates. The vote was on a continuing resolution that, according to the Congressional Research Service, “[d]irect[ed] the Clerk of the House of Representatives to make a correction in the enrollment of H.R. 1473 (Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, 2011) to prohibit any funds under such Act from being made available to Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc. or any affiliate of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc.” That change would have been made prior to sending H.R. 1473 – which had already passed both the House and Senate – to the president. The Senate rejected the concurrent resolution by vote of 42 to 58. [Senate Vote 60, 4/14/11; CRS Summary, H Con Res 36, 4/14/11]

 

Rubio Voted For Eliminating FY2011 Federal Funding For Planned Parenthood. In March 2011, Rubio voted for prohibiting any funds in the remainder of FY2011 from being used to fund Planned Parenthood. The provision was part of a continuing resolution to fund the federal government until the end of FY 2011 that, according to Congressional Quarterly, “would prohibit any funds in the bill from being made available to Planned Parenthood Federation of America Inc. or its affiliates.” The bill was rejected by the Senate by a vote of 44 to 56. The bill number was later used as the vehicle for another piece of legislation. [Senate Vote 36, 3/9/11; Congressional Actions, H.R. 1; Congressional Quarterly, 3/1/11

 

Ultrasounds

 

2010: Rubio Urged Crist Not To Veto HB 1143, A Bill That Would Require Women To Have An Ultrasound Prior To An Abortion. According to Florida Times-Union, “While most of the heated debate around an abortion measure passed in the waning hours of the 2010 legislative session has focused on a provision requiring a woman to have an ultrasound before undergoing an abortion, the legislation also includes a potential political land mine for Gov. Charlie Crist. If Crist vetoes the bill, as he has indicated he is likely to do, he will also be nixing language that supporters say will bar taxpayer funding of abortions. […] In fact, Rubio highlighted the issue in a statement last month on the abortion bill, House Bill 1143.” [Florida Times-Union, 6/2/10]

 

Rubio Supported HB 1143. According to Florida Times-Union, “In fact, Rubio highlighted the issue in a statement last month on the abortion bill, House Bill 1143. ‘If Governor Crist vetoes this legislation, he will clear the way for taxpayer funding of abortion in Florida, an extreme policy which runs contrary to the mainstream values most Floridians share,’ Rubio said.” [Florida Times-Union, 6/2/10]

 

2008: Rubio-Led Florida House Passed Legislation Requiring Ultrasound Exam Before Abortion. According to Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel, “The Florida House on Wednesday mounted what critics called a two-pronged assault on abortion rights, passing legislation that would require pregnant women to undergo ultrasound exams before getting abortions and effectively defining life at conception for criminal prosecutions. Any woman seeking to terminate a pregnancy would be required to pay for an ultrasound procedure – and view the results unless she signed a waiver – before having the abortion, under a bill passed by the House largely along party lines.” [Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel, 4/3/08]

 

  • Women Seeking Abortions Would Be Required To Pay For The Ultrasound Procedures Before Being Able To Obtain An Abortion. According to Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel, “The Florida House on Wednesday mounted what critics called a two-pronged assault on abortion rights, passing legislation that would require pregnant women to undergo ultrasound exams before getting abortions and effectively defining life at conception for criminal prosecutions. Any woman seeking to terminate a pregnancy would be required to pay for an ultrasound procedure – and view the results unless she signed a waiver – before having the abortion, under a bill passed by the House largely along party lines.” [Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel, 4/3/08]

 

Rubio Was Speaker When A Bill Passed The Florida House Which Would Require “An Ultrasound To Be Performed On Any Women Obtaining An Abortion.” In April 2008, Rubio, as Speaker of the House, voted to support for a bill that required that third trimester abortions be performed in hospital; provided for disciplinary actions; required ultrasound that is reviewed with patient; specified who must perform required duties; required written certification when patient declines review; provided exemptions; revised printed materials requirements; revised parental notice provisions; required appointment of guardian ad litem for minor petitioning for waiver. The House passed in a vote of 70 to 45. The bill went on to die on the Senate calendar. [Florida Legislative Archive, H 0257, 4/2/08]

 

Contraception

Rubio’s Religious Liberty Fight Against Coverage

2014: Rubio Joined A Group Of 89 Members Of Congress In Submitting An Amicus Brief To The U.S. Supreme Court, Asking It To Strike Down The Provision Requiring Employers To Provide Contraceptive Coverage For Their Employees. According to a press release from the office of Senator Marco Rubio, “In light of today’s Supreme Court oral arguments on the Hobby Lobby case, U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) issued the following statement defending religious liberty: […] ‘I was proud to join with 88 members of Congress, of both political parties, in an amicus brief submitted in this case. That brief clearly demonstrates the long-held American tradition of respecting religious freedom, from the First Amendment to the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. I hope, and I pray, that the Supreme Court will uphold that tradition in this case by ruling in favor of religious liberty.” [Official Website of Senator Marco Rubio,3/25/14]

 

February 2012: Rubio Introduced Religious Freedom Restoration Act. According to the Pensacola News Journal, Rubio introduced the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 2012 (RFRA), which would repeal the requirement in the Affordable Care Act requiring employers offer coverage for contraceptives, if the employer had a religious objection. In a statement, Rubio said, “The Obama Administration’s obsession with forcing mandates on the American people has now reached a new low by violating the conscience rights and religious liberties of our people.” [Pensacola News Journal, 2/1/12]

 

Editorial Reaction

 

Boston Globe Editorial: Obama Protected Religious Freedom, Rubio Did Not. In an editorial, the Boston Globe wrote, “At SundayMass, Catholic parishioners across the country were read letters denouncing the Obama administration’s recent decision to require religiously affiliated hospitals, colleges, and charities to offer health insurance coverage to employees for contraception and the ‘morning-after pill.’ On Monday, Rubio, a Republican star who is often mentioned as a VP candidate, introduced a bill that would override the Obama policy by allowing religious institutions that morally oppose contraception to refuse to cover it. […] Obama isn’t trying to regulate religion or undermine Catholicism. He’s telling Catholic leaders they can’t regulate the beliefs of those of other faiths. That’s fitting in a country that treasures religious freedom, but also values separation of church and state.” [Boston Globe, 2/2/12]

 

Tampa Bay Times Editorial: Rubio’s Bill Showed He Believed “Women … Should Be Subject To A Religious Agenda As A Condition Of Their Employment.” In an editorial, the Tampa Bay Times blasted RFRA, arguing that “U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio believes that women who work for religiously affiliated hospitals, universities and charities should be subject to a religious agenda as a condition of their employment. The Florida Republican introduced a bill this week that would allow any employer with religious objections to avoid covering contraception in its employee health insurance plan. Rubio claims this would promote religious liberty. But whose? Certainly not the religious liberty of female employees. […] Rubio’s bill would overrule the Health and Human Services Department with language so expansive that it would allow any employer, whether formally associated with a religion or not, to deny contraceptive coverage in its health care plan on the basis of a religious belief.” [Tampa Bay Times, 2/2/12]

 

Supported The Hobby Lobby Decision

 

2014: Rubio Praised The Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby Ruling, Said It Was A Victory For Religious Liberty And A Reminder That Obamacare Should Be “Entirely Repealed And Replaced.” According to the Office of Senator Marco Rubio “[Rubio said] The Supreme Court has correctly recognized that Obamacare’s trampling of religious liberty in the Hobby Lobby case should not stand. Obamacare was written and passed with a clear disregard for the reality that millions of Americans are inspired by their faiths in all aspects of their lives, including the way entrepreneurs manage their businesses. In America, no one should be forced to violate their religious beliefs if they wish to run a business. The Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision is a re-affirmation of America’s commitment to religious freedom and a reminder of why Obamacare is such a flawed law that needs to be entirely repealed and replaced.” [Office of Senator Marco Rubio, 6/30/14]

 

Rubio Said That The Supreme Court Hobby Lobby Case Was “One Of The Most Pivotal Cases On Religious Liberty In The Modern History Of Our Country.”  According to a press release from the Office of Senator Marco Rubio, “Today, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in one of the most pivotal cases on religious liberty in the modern history of our country. Three companies – including Hobby Lobby, Mardel’s Books and Conestoga Wood Specialties – are taking a stand against Obamacare and its requirement that all employers include contraception in their employee health plan. While these companies are leading the charge here, this case will ultimately impact many more businesses and organizations.” [Office of Senator Marco Rubio – Press Release, 3/25/14]

 

Voted Three Times To Eliminate Affordable Care Act Contraception Coverage

2013: Rubio Voted To Support Allowing Employers To Claim Exemptions To ACA’s Provisions On Health Care And Contraception Coverage On The Basis Of Religious And Moral Objections. In March 2013, Rubio voted for an amendment that, according to the National Law Review, “would allow employers to opt out of contraception coverage on moral grounds.” According to the Congressional Record, the purpose of the amendment was to “establish a deficit-neutral reserve fund to protect women’s access to health care, including primary and preventive care, in a manner consistent with protecting rights of conscience.” The vote was on an amendment to the Senate version of the fiscal year 2014 budget resolution. The Senate rejected the amendment by a vote of 44 to 55. [Senate Vote 55, 3/22/13; Congressional Record, 3/22/13; National Law Review, 3/25/13]

 

2013: Rubio Voted To Oppose Protecting ACA’s Health Care And Contraception Coverage Provisions For Women. In March 2013, Rubio voted against an amendment that, according to The Hill’s Floor Action Blog, would “protect women’s healthcare coverage and employer-provided contraceptive coverage authorized under the Affordable Care Act.” According to the Congressional Record, the purpose of the amendment was to “establish a deficit-neutral reserve fund to protect women’s access to health care, including primary and preventative health care, family planning and birth control, and employer-provided contraceptive coverage, such as was provided under the Affordable Care Act.” The vote was on an amendment to the Senate version of the fiscal year 2014 budget resolution. The Senate adopted the amendment by a vote of 56 to 43. The underlying budget resolution later passed the Senate, but Congress had taken no further action on it as of September, 2013. [Senate Vote 54, 3/22/13; The Hill’s Floor Action Blog, 3/22/13; Congressional Record, 3/21/13; Congressional Actions, S.Con.Res. 8]

 

2012: Rubio Effectively Voted For The Blunt Amendment, Which Would Have Allowed Employers And Insurance Companies To Avoid ACA Requirements They Found Morally Objectionable. In March 2012, Rubio effectively voted for the Blunt Amendment that, according to CNN Wire, “would establish that an entity refusing coverage on religious or moral grounds is not in violation of the law.” The vote was on a motion to table the amendment, with 48 senators voting against the motion – keeping the amendment alive – and 51 senators voting for the motion. [Senate Vote 24, 3/1/12; CNN Wire, 3/1/12]

 

Bush On Women’s Health

 

Bush Claimed He Was The Most Pro-Life Governor In Modern Times

 

Jeb Bush: “I’m Probably The Most Pro-Life Governor In Modern Times.” According to the Associated Press, “‘I’m probably the most pro-life governor in modern times’ in Florida, President Bush’s brother said hours before signing a bill Tuesday that allowed him to order Terri Schiavo’s feeding tube reinserted despite a series of court rulings and against the wishes of Schiavo’s husband.” [Associated Press, 10/23/03]

 

Bush Supported A Federal Ban On Abortion After 20 Weeks

 

2014: Bush Called Federal Legislation Banning Abortion After Twenty Weeks “Humane” And “Compassionate.” According to the Christian Broadcasting Network, “Some potential GOP presidential candidates are showing their support for a piece of controversial abortion legislation. The Brody File has obtained letters from many of them backing a bill that would ban abortions in America after twenty weeks. […] In those letters of support, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush calls the bill ‘humane’ and ‘compassionate.’” [Christian Broadcasting Network , 9/16/14]

 

2015: Jeb Bush Supported Legislation Banning Abortion After 20 Weeks. According to Politico, “White House hopefuls like Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush are also embracing the legislation. National Republican leaders believe the GOP’s focus on the 20-week ban could pay big dividends at the ballot box.” [Politico, 1/12/15]

 

Even Though He Supports Rape And Incest Exceptions, Bush Selected A Running Mate That Did Not And Defended A Republican Platform Lacking Exceptions

 

BUSH SAID HE SUPPORTED EXCEPTIONS FOR RAPE, INCEST, OR WHEN THE LIFE OF THE MOTHER WAS THREATENED

 

1994: Jeb Bush Described Himself As A Right-To-Lifer Who Supports Restrictions On Abortions In All Cases Except Incest, Rape Or When The Life Of The Mother Is Threatened. According to the Orlando Sentinel, “Bush describes himself as a right-to-lifer who supports restrictions on abortions in all cases except incest, rape or when the life of the mother is threatened.” [Orlando Sentinel, 9/13/94]

 

2015: Jeb Bush Opposed Abortion “Except In The Cases Of Incest, Rape, Or When The Life Of The Woman Is Endangered.”According to the Huffington Post, “Kristy Campbell, a spokeswoman for Jeb Bush, told The Huffington Post Wednesday that the former governor opposes abortion except in cases of incest, rape or when the life of the woman is endangered.” [Huffington Post, 4/27/15]

 

Jeb Bush Said He Did Not Believe In A Health Of The Mother Exception For Abortion. According to a transcript of Meet The Press, “CHUCK TODD: One quick follow on abortion. What exceptions are you comfortable with on abortion? JEB BUSH: I accept, just that my views haven’t changed. I believe in the exceptions of rape and incest and the life of the mother, of course. CHUCK TODD: Is there a line on health? What is that line on life and health of the mother? JEB BUSH: Well, the life of the mother, not health of the mother.” [Transcript – Meet The Press, 11/1/15]

 

DEFENDED 1992 REPUBLICAN PLATFORM THAT LACKED RAPE AND INCEST EXCEPTIONS

 

1992: Bush Said An Anti-Abortion Platform Without Rape Or Incest Exceptions Was “Fine”

 

Jeb Bush Said The 1992 Republican Platform On Abortion Was “Fine As It Is.” According to CNN, “KING: We are, all of us, troubled with this abortion issue. It doesn’t go away. Everyone has an opinion on it. Your mother said it shouldn’t be in a platform. What do you think? Mr. JEB BUSH: Well, I don’t want to get into an argument with my mother KING: Go ahead, Jeb! Mr. JEB BUSH: -so I’m going to remain silent. I’ll probably do that when she gets here on Monday. But I think the platform is fine as it is. I think the important thing to recognize is that there are a lot of people who disagree on this issue, and they’re having their opportunity to express their opinions. The Democrats didn’t allow people that had the opposite opinion to express theirs.” [CNN, 8/16/92]

 

  • 1992 Republican Platform Did Not Permit For Rape Or Incest Exceptions. According to Los Angeles Times, “But unlike Bush’s personal view, which allows for abortion in cases of rape, incest or a threat to the life of the mother, the Republican Party platform would permit no exceptions. It proclaims that ‘the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed’ under any circumstances and calls for the appointment of judges who hold that view.” [Los Angeles Times, 8/18/92]

 

Bush Opposed Health Exception To Abortion Ban, Only Supported A “Life” Exception

 

Bush Called The Health Exception A “Way To Create A Huge Loophole,” A Loophole That Would Make His Partial-Birth Abortion Law A “Moot Point.” According to e-mails released by Bush via ABC News, “He writes that he was misquoted, saying he said he would not support legislation that had the ‘health of the mother’ exception, writing the ‘health exception has been interpreted in such a way as to create a huge loophole making the whole point of trying to pass a law outlawing this horrific procedure irrelevant.’ The reporter writes back, thanking him for his response: ‘You truly are, as others have told me, the modern-day, internet-age governor,’ and noting a clarification was printed in that day’s paper. Bush responded once again, noting the clarification did not make note of the ‘health exception misunderstanding. I don’t support a health exception and would not support that one since it would be such a large loophole that it would be a moot point.’” [ABC News, 12/31/14]

 

Bush: “If You’re Going To Have A Bill With A Health Exception In It, You Might As Well not Have A Bill, Because It’s Such A Loophole It Doesn’t Do Anything.” According to the Miami Herald, “And Bush, too, reiterated his opposition to an exception to protect the health of the mother. ‘If you’re going to have a bill with an health exception in it, you might as well not have a bill, because it’s such a loophole it doesn’t do anything,’ Bush said.” [Miami Herald, 5/20/04]

 

April 2000: The Legislature Passed A Bill That Provided An Exemption For Cases Involving The Life Of The Mother, But Not For The Mother’s Health. According to the Miami Herald, “Bush said if he were convinced the bill was unconstitutional because it lacked a provision to protect the mother’s health, he would not sign it. A mother’s-health amendment failed on an 18-18 tie vote in the Senate earlier. ‘Well, if that’s what he said, he better not sign it, then,’ said Charlene Carres, a Tallahassee lawyer and lobbyist for abortion-rights groups. The bill that passed Wednesday includes an exception to protect the mother’s life, but not her health.” [Miami Herald, 4/27/00]

 

Bush Cut Funding For Planned Parenthood Family Planning Services

 

2001: BUSH VETOED FUNDING FOR FAMILY PLANNING SERVICES PROVIDED THROUGH PLANNED PARENTHOOD

 

2001: Jeb Bush Vetoed Funding For Family Planning Services Provided To Poor Women Through Planned Parenthood.According to the St. Petersburg Times, “Even the most powerful state lawmakers were hit by Gov. Jeb Bush’s vetoes on Friday. The Republican governor vetoed $ 290-million in the state budget that lawmakers passed this spring, including more than $ 25-million for projects in two counties – Manatee and Sarasota – represented by Senate President John McKay. […] The cuts also included $ 302,843 for family planning services provided to poor women through local Planned Parenthood affiliates, money that had been provided each year for more than a decade. The share earmarked for Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida, which includes the Tampa Bay area, was $ 125,800 for services for 1,258 women. The other regional affiliates affected by the cuts are based in Jacksonville and Naples. ‘Many of our patients have no health insurance nor are eligible for Medicaid. They absolutely depend on clinics like ours,’ said Barbara A. Zdravecky, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida.” [St. Petersburg Times, 6/16/01]

 

2002: FUNDING CUTS CAUSED TEENS TO PAY TO RECEIVE SERVICES

 

2002: Bush’s $124,000 In Cuts To Planned Parenthood Caused Teens To Pay A $15 Co-Pay And $7 For Birth Control.According to the St. Petersburg Times, “Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida lost $124,000 last year from its family planning division. Bush diverted the funds to abstinence-only educational programs. Now teens who use Planned Parenthood have a $15 co-pay and must pay $7 for birth control. ‘We do charge the teens now,’ said LaWanda Walker, public affairs coordinator for Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida. ‘That we really, really hate. You need to be able to have services and make it convenient.’” [St. Petersburg Times, 1/29/03]

 

2015: BUSH SUPPORTED EFFORTS TO DEFUND PLANNED PARENTHOOD

 

2015: Jeb Bush’s Senior Adviser Said Bush Supported Efforts To “Defund Planned Parenthood.” According to the Huffington Post, “Jeb Bush supports efforts to defund Planned Parenthood, according to one of his senior advisers. Jordan Sekulow is a prominent Christian evangelical attorney and joined the former Florida governor’s team last month as a senior adviser. He spoke Saturday at the Faith and Freedom Summit in Iowa, where nine presidential hopefuls appealed to the group of conservatives in attendance. Bush, who is exploring a run and widely expected to jump into the field, skipped the event and sent Sekulow in his stead. ‘We have got to defund Planned Parenthood, by the way, and Gov. Bush supports those efforts,’ said Sekulow to applause from the crowd.” [Huffington Post,4/27/15]