Sen. Harry Reid tweeted this today:
"Whether women choose to use #contraception should be their decision, not the decision of their employers or politicians in Washington."
To which the people say: "What the ...?"
Choice, of course, is not even close to the issue at hand. Sen. Reid yesterday said he absolutely, 100% supported the president's government mandate forcing all businesses -- even religious organizations -- to provide free contraception and abortion pills as part of their health insurance.
The government has no right to do that. It clearly violates the First Amendment to the Constitution. Must a bishop offer free "morning after" pills to his staff, even though he considers it a sin? In Sen. Reid's own religion (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints) anyone who helps another have an abortion is excommunicable. There is no weasel room in that principle, even for U.S. Senators.
The Catholic church has another approach. Authorities there say that anyone who helps facilitate an abortion has excommunicated him- or herself. Yet yesterday Sen. Reid and President Obama said everyone -- even religious organizations with conscientious objections to the government rule -- must make abortion and contraception pills available for free.
Today religious leaders said they would go to jail before violating their religious principles. The U.S. Catholic church read letters of admonition from the pulpit on Sunday, some of them in Spanish to the church's sizable Hispanic constituency. Their target was precisely leaders like President Obama and Sen. Reid.
Yet in today's statement, Reid makes it sound like he's somehow outside those oppressive "politicians in Washington" mandating abortion and contraception.
He most certainly is not. In fact he is such a primary culprit of this outrageous overstep of government authority he ought to be called "Abortion Harry".
P.S. -- While I don't agree with Sen. Reid about much politically anymore these days, I do know him to be a thoughtful man, even when he's totally pissed at me. In that regard, I hope he thinks hard about the position he's carved out for himself on this issue, and reverses himself with strength and conviction. He could be such a powerful force for good and a voice of reason if he did.