During the lead-up to the 2010 midterm elections, Republicans repeated two slogans that invariably swept them to victory and control of the House. Keeping their word, they immediately held a ceremonial sham vote to repeal the new health law pleasing their supporters and seemingly fulfilling one campaign promise. Their other promise to create jobs has been mysteriously ignored and instead, Republicans proposed spending cuts that will cost the American people nearly a million more lost jobs. When the media informed Speaker John Boehner of the job losses, his flippant remark, “so be it,” demonstrated that the Republicans never intended to create jobs and didn’t care if they killed jobs with their spending cuts. Instead of creating jobs or helping the economy, the Republicans have spent four months on an issue that has been settled since 1973, and in the process have exposed themselves as misogynists who are pandering to the Religious Right.
The conservative wave has plunged the nation into an anti-choice frenzy that has produced nearly 1,000 anti-choice bills in state houses and Congress in four short months and there are myriad iterations in the works. This avalanche of anti-women’s rights bills is an attack of religious zealots disguised as teabaggers promoting fiscal conservatism, and is a clarion call-to-arms against democracy and secular government the Founding Fathers intended for America. The Republicans in Congress and state houses have tapped into the Reconstructionist fervor of the teabaggers by promising to promote their anti-government agenda, and along the way have left behind any pretense of creating jobs or fixing the economy.
On first glance the victims appear to be millions of Americans who are out of work because Republicans have given corporations permission to move jobs out of the country, but the reality is if the Dominionists are allowed to continue unabated, women’s rights will be eliminated before voters can oust the extremist element from positions of power and authority. Already this year, several states have begun defunding Planned Parenthood over the fallacy that it is an abortion machine, and socially conservative members of Congress have been unrelenting in their attempts at eliminating the organization completely. The dirty truth is that it is not just about abortion services that make up less than 3% of Planned Parenthoods’ services, or the cancer screenings the organization provides, but a sinister plot to destroy women’s rights to contraception.
Michele Bachmann gives insight into the Dominionists true impetus for eliminating Planned Parenthood and she boldly states that it is a target because it is “an arrogant corrupt Washington elite” that has “declared war on marriage, on families, on fertility, and on faith.” Indeed, extremist Christians view women as little more than “hyper-fertile wives and mothers in obedient service to god,” and they have infiltrated Congress and state legislatures to force all American women into subservient roles in society. However, mainstream conservatives, and especially teabaggers, see the battle as only eliminating a woman’s right to choose abortion.
In the Louisiana legislature, an evangelical maniac has a bill that is heading for a vote that outlaws abortion completely in the state. Representative John LaBruzzo’s total abortion ban is intended to provide a challenge to the 1973 Supreme Court decision allowing women the right to terminate her pregnancy. LaBruzzo gained notoriety for advocating jail for women who have abortions and rewarding rich people for procreating with extra tax incentives for “for college-educated, higher-income people to have more children.” In Indiana, Republican governor Mitch Daniels is committed to depriving all Planned Parenthood clinics of $2 million in Medicaid funds that will eliminate contraception services, cancer screening and prevention, and STD testing that mostly low-income women receive each year. Additionally, because it is illegal to deny payment to a clinic that provides constitutionally protected services, Indiana would face sanctions that will cost family-planning providers $4 million in Medicaid funding that will in turn cost countless jobs. The Republicans are willing to lose jobs to satisfy maniacal fundamentalists and fertility proponents regardless their campaign promise of jobs, jobs, jobs.
In Texas, Republicans passed a law that eliminates funding for a program that assists poor uninsured women to receive health care if a health clinic files a lawsuit and wins that will deprive 40,000 women of healthcare and family planning services. An Oklahoma legislator is proposing a bill that makes nutrition vouchers unavailable for the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program if they are distributed through Planned Parenthood, and it will affect low-income women’s ability to afford nutritional food for their children. Planned Parenthood is one of 9 independent contractors in Oklahoma who are authorized to distribute WIC vouchers. It is a recurring theme for conservative Christian legislators to force birth on poor women and then starve the children the minute they exit the womb, and it calls into question exactly what “sanctity of life” means to Religious Right fanatics.
The list of Dominionists’ attacks on women’s reproductive rights and jobs is never ending and it is questionable how dedicated the Republicans in Congress and state legislatures are to the Religious Right’s agenda. There is little doubt that there are religious fanatics in Congress and state houses who are sincere in their effort to turn America into a theocracy as well as ban abortion, and the danger to America is real. However, Republican pandering to evangelical fundamentalists is not so different than wealthy industrialists and oil magnates Charles and David Koch pandering to ignorant anti-government teabaggers. Both teabaggers and fundamentalists are being played by neo-conservatives whose goal is turning the government into a private corporate enterprise.
A 2010 survey reported that 80% of teabaggers identified themselves as Christians, and 57% “consider themselves part of the conservative Christian movement” and it explains the drive to deny women’s rights among teabags. Republicans and conservative think-tanks have ignored or whitewashed the religious zealotry that underlies the GOP’s legislative agenda because mainstream supporters are reticent to endorse radical fundamentalists’ agenda. It is easier for them to manipulate separate groups like teabags with promises of small government, fiscal responsibility, and lower taxes than to come out and propose privatizing the government. The pushback against eliminating Medicare is proof that the conservative privatization agenda is not going to endear teabaggers or religious fanatics to the Republican agenda.
Yesterday, Republicans revealed a jobs plan that consists of lower taxes, eliminating regulations, and relaxing patent law so corporations are able to steal more from Americans. The jobs’ plan has proven ineffective in the past and will be difficult to garner support for; besides there is nothing new the American people haven’t heard before from Republicans. In fact, eight years of the Bush Administration failed to create sufficient jobs, and lower taxes and lax regulations are responsible for crashing the economy. It is easier for Republicans to gain support by following an anti-abortion agenda regardless that defunding Planned Parenthood and restricting women’s rights kills jobs.
The danger for Republicans is that when teabaggers and religious right fanatics realize that the GOP’s economic policies and privatization schemes will decimate Christians, the tri-corner hat crowd, and Americans’ jobs, they will crucify Republicans. Regardless how religiously motivated anti-abortion proponents are, even evangelical fundamentalists cannot subsist on anti-abortion legislation, and god cannot turn anti-choice laws into food and housing.
Republicans never had a plan to create jobs and they are using anti-abortion fervor as a distraction to curry favor with fundamentalist voters as well as subvert women’s rights. Unfortunately, there is still a year-and-a-half for Dominionists to wreak havoc on women’s rights and the poor who are collateral damage in the war on abortion and contraception. It is disheartening that in four months nearly 1,000 new anti-choice laws are advancing through state legislatures, but Republicans have not acted to create one job. The only connection to jobs Republicans can claim is the nearly 1 million jobs that will be lost if their spending cuts and anti-abortion measures all reach fruition.
It is imperative that decent Americans and reasonable Christians speak out in support of women’s rights while they have the opportunity, because if anyone thinks for a minute the Dominionists will not completely destroy any opposition to their theocratic agenda, they are deluded. Republicans will continue to spend time attacking a woman’s right to choose her own reproductive health to satisfy the Religious Right and teabaggers, but they will not create jobs.
If the Religious Right can feed their families with anti-choice legislation that’s great for them, but if they can’t, America’s secular government will provide assistance, health care, and maybe a job; if Liberals are in control. If Republicans and conservatives are in charge, as Eric Cantor and Republicans say; “they’re on their own.”