WASHINGTON (CBSMiami) – Republican and Democratic leaders saw their opponents’ blood in the water over the issue of contraception as they voted in the Senate Thursday over a controversial amendment co-sponsored by Florida Republican Marco Rubio.

The amendment, put forth by Republican Senator Roy Blunt of Missouri, would have allowed employers to deny their employees contraceptive care and other services if it conflicts with the employers religious or moral convictions.

The vote failed 51-48 with four conservative Democrats crossing party lines to vote with Republicans.

Senator Rubio has sponsored a separate bill that would only impact faith-based institutions and the issue of contraceptives.

The amendment was filed in the days after President Barack Obama’s administration mandated that health insurers cover contraception, including birth control. Many health plans didn’t cover the costs of birth control, even though they would cover costs of medicines like Viagra.

President Obama’s plan was immediately attacked by some wings of the Catholic Church and Republicans, including Rubio, as being an attack on religion. The White House allowed for a few more exemptions, but wouldn’t back down from the overall coverage mandate.

Republicans have pushed the issue trying to frame it as an attack on religion.

But, so far, the argument has fallen on deaf ears from voters. Most polling shows that wide majorities, even a majority of Catholics, support the coverage mandate for contraception.

Nevertheless, Sens. Blunt and Rubio have pushed their amendment to a vote, which could come as early as Thursday.

The amendment will not pass the Senate, which was known, but Democrats want to portray Republicans as being anti-women by making them go on the record as voting against contraception coverage.

The issue has already started to get discussed on the campaign trail with all of the GOP candidates coming out in support of the amendment, even though Mitt Romney originally said he opposed the amendment.

Many states already had similar provisions already in place for health insurers in the respective state, but the move by the administration made it applicable nationwide.

Comments (5)
  1. I hope these zealots aka legislators know that birth control pills are used for so many other things in womens reproductive health. It is used to control heavy periods, regularize periods and for so many other issues regarding reproductive matters.

    I do not understand the basis for providing an opt out plan for reasons as vague as “moral” reasons to corporate employers, as the reasons to opt out of this womens health matter. It will be abused by them!

    I am astonished that this matter has been allowed to become this huge. The exceptions granted religious organizations was sufficient. This now seems like pandering to the big corporate interests as opposed to considering women’s health.

    And even if contraception was for preventing pregnancy in marriage or outside of it, why on earth should it become this big issue. Having sex outside marriage is promoted as part of the American cultural fabric and there is no legislation to stop the commercialization of sex and the searing of our hearts and minds about having sex with anyone or anything. Then at the tail end of it, the legislature jumps in to try and avert something like contraception which is the fall out of the permissive culture we fan and promote.

    This stinks.

    1. Josef Mengele says:

      I should not have to pay for your sex period! Period! Keep your sex life out of my wallet.

      1. You do not have to pay for anything to do with our health. Many professional women have insurance AND we pay premiums. We just do not want our reproductive rights legislated.

  2. mark says:

    GOP, Welcome to the dark ages.

    The ideology is frightening !

  3. Josef Mengele says:

    Keep your sex life out of my wallet. Not to cop Ahmedinajab or even poor Rick Santorum, but LAST ENLIGHTENED century was no pip Adolf. Or should I say Pol Pot or Mao or Stalin or about 50 other genocidal dictators from last century. Keep your sex life out of my wallet!