What does president Bush think about contraception? Is he for it or opposed to it? Will he find a Supreme Court nominee who will one day ban our access to condoms? This sounds fairly far-fetched, Echidne in the tinfoil hat again, you mutter. But is it really that far-fetched?
On May 26, 2005 reporters asked McClellan about the president's views on contraception. McClellan's answer:
Q There are news reports this morning that parents and children who were guests of the President, when they visited Congress, wore stickers with the wording, "I was an embryo." And my question is, since all of us were once embryos, and all of us were once part sperm and egg, is the President also opposed to contraception, which stops this union and kills both sperm and egg?
MR. McCLELLAN: I think the President has made his views known on these issues, and his views known –
Q You know, but what I asked, is he opposed -- he's not opposed to contraception, is he?
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, and you've made your views known, as well. The President –
Q No, no, but is he opposed to contraception, Scott? Could you just tell us yes or no?
MR. McCLELLAN: Les, I think that this question is –
Q Well, is he? Does he oppose contraception?
MR. McCLELLAN: Les, I think the President's views are very clear when it comes to building a culture of life –
Q If they were clear, I wouldn't have asked.
MR. McCLELLAN: -- and if you want to ask those questions, that's fine. I'm just not going to dignify them with a response.
Now I find this very scary. McClellan usually plays the clam when the answer is controversial or could cast Bush in a bad light. Why is the question of contraception controversial in the United States of America, anno Domini 2005?
A repetition of the same question today caused this exchange of informative comments:
Q I have one follow up. Nineteen members of Congress from seven states have written a letter to the President saying that they are still waiting for an answer to a May 26th question: Is the President opposed to contraception. And my question is, could they now have an answer to my question? Or do you regard them, too, as not to be dignified with a response?
MR. McCLELLAN: No, I think we've talked about these issues before and these issues when it comes to the federal government and programs aimed at promoting abstinence and how those ought to be funded on at least equal footing with other programs, so I think we've addressed the President's views in that context.
I hate to say this but you might want to start stocking up not only on ducktape but also those little plastic penis bags. For the access to contraception is indeed a controversial topic for the wingnuts who run this country right now.
Information via NARAL.