In his speech at the Republican National Convention, Romney told Americans that his mother used to ask, “Why should women have any less say than men?” What he didn’t tell voters is that his vision for America is one in which women have a lot “less say” over their own reproductive health and their ability to stand up for equal pay.
Here are five ways Romney and Ryan would give women “less say”:
Hand control over women’s health choices to their bosses. Romney supports the Blunt-Rubio amendment, which would let employers make decisions about which women’s health services they wanted to cover, which could limit women’s access to birth control, the HPV vaccine, and even cancer screenings. Ryan supported similar legislation in Congress.
Backed a proposal to outlaw all abortion even in cases of rape or incest. Romney supported a proposal that would ban all abortions—even in cases of rape or incest. Ryan co-sponsored extreme “personhood” legislation that would ban all abortions and some common forms of birth control, and also co-sponsored legislation to redefine rape. Romney and Ryan are way out of the mainstream on women’s health.
“Get rid of” federal funding for Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood provides health services, like cancer screenings and well-woman exams, to millions of women every year, helping them take control of their health decisions. Romney and Ryan want to “get rid of” all federal funding for Planned Parenthood.
Won’t stand up for the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. The Lilly Ledbetter law makes sure women can fight back and go to court when they get paid less than their male colleagues for the same work. Romney refuses to say whether he would have signed it into law—and Ryan voted against it.
Won’t support the Paycheck Fairness Act. President Obama believes we need to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act to make sure women can discuss their salary with their co-workers, which makes pay discrimination harder to hide and, therefore, harder to commit. Romney won’t tell us whether or not he supports a law that would give women more “say” in discussions about pay equity.
Romney and Ryan have taken an extreme stand against women’s health and women’s rights. The only promise they offer American women is a pledge to severely restrict how much say they have over their own health and treatment in the workplace.