like there was any doubt

Arizona So Going To Win This Birth Control Coverage Denial Contest

Hope it feels good, ladies! Love, Arizona.

Arizona heard there was some serious crazy goin’ around the country, some of that fun vagina-hatin’ crazy, so they said to themselves, is someone doin’ crazy better than Arizona these days? STEP ASIDE. *CRACKS KNUCKLES.* Only a pansy lawmaking body would seek merely to exempt any religious employer from the birth control coverage mandate. Major league insanity, on the other hand, is a bill like this one: any religious employer can also fire “an employee who independently chooses to obtain insurance coverage or prescriptions for contraceptives from another source.” BAM. (Now with update below!)

The bill, HB 2625, included the phrase, “A religious employer shall not discriminate against an employee who independently chooses to obtain insurance coverage or prescriptions for contraceptives from another source.” But now it doesn’t!

**UPDATE: Arizona ACLU Public Policy Director Anjali Abraham writes in to your Wonkette to clarify the deal with the anti-discrimination provision mentioned above. The provision was not first included as a protection and then struck from the text of the bill as we thought, but rather the anti-discrimination provision is currently part of Arizona law, and HB 2625 seeks to get rid of it:

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Currently, Arizona law prevents religious employers from discriminating against women who obtain birth control on their own. HB 2625 eliminates both the definition of “religious employer” and the anti-discrimination provision from existing law. In other words, the only reason HB 2625 ever included the anti-discrimination provision was in order to strike it from Arizona’s laws. So it’s not that the bill originally offered up some anti-discrimination language that was eventually dropped. Rather, Arizona women currently have a legal right to be free from employment discrimination if they get birth control on their own, and this bill is trying to scrap that right altogether.

(In other words, it’s even worse than we originally understood.)

From Arizona Republic columnist E.J. Montini:

The new law lets employers off the hook in terms of providing contraceptive services. If it also lets them off the hook in terms of discriminating against employees who purchase such things on their own doesn’t that open up the possibility of discrimination or firing?

The ACLU’s national office says that employers can now “claim” to be able to fire employees for using birth control. (Federal law may well supercede that.)

Arizona ACLU’s [Anjali] Abraham told me, “I just wanted to be clear that it’s the employer making that claim without getting into whether or not the employer has the right to do so (that may be a more complicated question.) Certainly, though, HB2625 removed an existing protection that would prevent an employer from firing a woman for getting birth control on her own, which is very troubling.”

Oh man, this was such an easy one. Give Arizona a CHALLENGE next time you want them to out-crazy everyone else.

[Arizona Republic via Wonkette Operative "Phil R."]

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165 comments

    1. sati_demise

      Except they are all retired men and menopausal women. the men just wish the women could all become pregnant and barefoot

        1. anniegetyerfun

          Yes, I know – this is yet another thing that the Canadian relatives mention casually every time their open their fucking mouths.

    1. Swampgas_Man

      But it's not as cheap as simple FIRING! What, you think there's not a line of men that would kill for your job?

  1. CogitoErgoBibo

    I'm waiting for them to legislate the thought crime of just considering buying insurance which covers birth control, even if you eventually decide that child-risking married sex is the only type you'll ever have.

    In other news, I'm moving to Canada.

  2. UnholyMoses

    (To steal and modify a line from last night's Daily Show):

    Ya know the difference between a fetus, a corporation, and a woman in Arizona?

    One of them isn't considered a person.

  3. freakishlywrong

    My lady bits would like to go through one day without some fucknut assaulting them. The yahoo in the pic is less subtle than what fucking conservatives are trying to stick up our vajayjays. .

  4. UnholyMoses

    That picture should be on Arizona's state flag due to all of the massive pricks in the state.

  5. Serolf_Divad

    Next Arizona House Republicans will amend the bill to allow a supervisor to fire a subordinate for refusing to have sex with him.

    1. WhatTheHeck

      I fully expect to see all the men folk legislators wearing their “wife-beater shirts” to show how proud they are to be manly men.

  6. elviouslyqueer

    Your move, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, Virginia any state that isn't Canada.

    1. memzilla

      Any time I read about any piece of legislated f**ktardity enacted by any other state in the country, my only thoughts are

      1. "How will Arizona top this?"
      2. "Whatever it is, I'm sure they'll do it within two weeks."

      Your move, Florida.

    2. spends2much

      Apparently Arizona doesn't know we're KIDDING when we say "Your move, Arizona". Guys, you don't actually have to pass totally racist/insane/homophobic/mysoginistic laws. Unless you want to…

      1. Jukesgrrl

        You probably assumed they already did, but it took until this month for AZ to jump on another nimrod bandwagon. The one that turns unemployment recipients into slave labor. Yes, indeed, even the relatively broadminded Arizona Daily Star heralded the bill in an above-the-fold article yesterday as a way for the unemployed to "get job experience." Hey, assholes, they HAD jobs. They just lost them. They don't need experience but, yes, I get it that employers want free labor.

        1. OhNoGuy

          And with our Supreme Court, if they try to run away – Dred Scott!! They must be returned for their mandated labor.

  7. edgydrifter

    Aw, I thought maybe they had legalized beating sluts like pinatas as is the Lord's will. This revision to HB2625 is boring.

    1. dadanarchist

      I agree. This bill doesn't go far enough.

      When will some principled true conservative introduce HB 1667, the Slut Immolation Act.

      Because the Founders.

  8. neiltheblaze

    Another fun fact: A woman wrote this bill. A woman named Debbie Lesko, who happens to be Majority Whip in the Arizona House.

    Let's hear it for sisterhood, huh?

    When it gets challenged and then trashed by the courts for being completely unconstitutional, I fully expect her head to start spinning on her shoulders while she projectile vomits pea-soup.

      1. neiltheblaze

        And get a load of this twisted logic:

        Arizona House Bill 2625, authored by Majority Whip Debbie Lesko, R-Glendale, would permit employers to ask their employees for proof of medical prescription if they seek contraceptives for non-reproductive purposes, such as hormone control or acne treatment. "I believe we live in America. We don't live in the Soviet Union," Lesko said. "So, government should not be telling the organizations or mom and pop employers to do something against their moral beliefs."

        1. tessiee

          "government should not be telling the organizations or mom and pop employers to do something against their moral beliefs."

          Nice slide from "employers" to "mom and pop employers". Isn't the rationale for tax cuts and deregulation for the benefit of megacorporations that said corporations are "job creators"?

        2. snoopyfan2010

          No, the government shouldn't tell her what to do but after she pays her employees, it is their money and she has no say where that money goes. I would love to see this actually enforced since it is mostly those who earn more and are more educated who have easy access to contraception.

          This is noing short of a bully tactic to allow the employers to intimidate their employee into to not supporting the law.

    1. Jukesgrrl

      The first line of her official bio says, "Happily married mother of three children." So, how did she keep from being "mother of six," the preferred number in suburban Phoenix? Birth control pills? Or did she have hubby castrated?

    2. Jukesgrrl

      Since We the People of Arizona are her employers, I'd be happy to volunteer to be the Official Intruder who accompanies her to all her doctor appointments. Just to make sure she's not doing anything I don't approve of.

  9. BaldarTFlagass

    When they open that new Intel plant in Phoenix, they are going to require that all the women be impregnated before being hired.

    1. memzilla

      So Intel got the PanderBot 2000™ contract, and decided to locate the plant where its largest market is, I see.

  10. Goonemeritus

    Based on pure business needs most companies would slip birth control pills into the water cooler if they could. I find that whole maternity thing a significant distraction from the priorities of commerce.

    1. GOPCrusher

      Word.
      Most companies that I've worked for, fight with the insurance company to get them to cover the costs of birth control.

    2. fuflans

      right. my last full time employer took serious advantage of those of us (male and female) who didn't have children. and were forced to be far more considerate of those WITH children (male and female).

      i bitched about this a lot at the time – and heard a lot of similar stories from my childless colleagues.

      i imagine the 'free market' would be only to happy to trade off birth control for more hours / productivity.

    3. JustPixelz

      Long ago — and probably illegal then — I visited a company where management confided in me that they hired young single women for the office. If they got married, they were let go — to save on health insurance from maternity. Legal or not back then, it was awful. And they knew it — hence the "confided". Assholes.

      Anyway, the business solution to higher health premiums and absences due to pregnancy is to fire the baby-makers. They'll enact that in some red state any day now.

    4. tessiee

      "Based on pure business needs most companies would slip birth control pills into the water cooler if they could."

      Corporations/jerb creators like childfree workers…
      Pharmaceutical companies like the profits from selling bcs…

      Aunt Tom Lesko would be better advised to follow the lead of the other conservatives and go after the powerless, rather than make powerful enemies.

  11. Lascauxcaveman

    Arizona has an ACLU? I bet they have all have prescriptions for blood pressure medication.

  12. SorosBot

    Like Arizona is going to pay attention to preemption and the Constitution – their attempt to unconstitutionally make their own immigration law already proves that.

  13. GOPCrusher

    Next up, deny health care to anyone that tests positive for a STD.
    You just know it's coming.

    1. Oblios_Cap

      Hell, the industries ideal law is to deny insurance to anyone who needs it. And don't get me going on subrogation clauses in our insurance contracts. Let's just say that if you win the Lotto, you might not want your insurance providers to find out.

    2. prommie

      Ahem; the laws were still on the books in the 1980s which denied Social Security benefits and veterans benefits to people with syphillis.

  14. dadanarchist

    My hope is that as Colorado grows more liberal, some enlightened governor will just cut off Arizona's water supply and let the state blow away.

    1. Callyson

      As a California resident, I favor paying more for Centennial State water to make that plan happen.

    2. flamingpdog

      My hope is that as Colorado grows more liberal, we actually have an enlightened governor. The current Democratic governor is primairly interested in letting his state get blown away for the benefit of the oil and gas industry.

  15. Callyson

    For a state whose biggest bragging point is a large hole, it sure seems to have something against other cavities…

  16. BS4Dummies

    After I remove the expired aspirin label off this bottle and slap a BC one on it, I'll be forwarding it to the bill's sponsor, Rep. Debbie Lesko.

  17. Callyson

    And if I may shamelessly steal a line from another Wonketteer:
    I find this story very difficult to masturbate to.

    1. Baconzgood

      I find your statement difficult to masterbate to.

      I am flattered though. Stealing a line from me means I've been accepted into the Wonkette "inner sanctum".

  18. SorosBot

    So they went after the browns first, now the ladies; guess it's time for either the gays or the Muslims/atheists/Jews/etc. next.

  19. chicken_thief

    I can hardly wait to see what qualifies as "religious employer". This will be fun!!!

  20. metamarcisf

    Thanks, Wonkette, for deluging us with one story after another about how dumb America is. Let's jump the gun on the next one: when the Denver Broncos sign Peyton Manning in a day or two, how many right wing media outlets will immediately frame the story along the lines of: "Anti-Christian Elway Tries to Force Tebow Out of the NFL"?

    1. UnholyMoses

      If the Donkeys sign Peyton, I'll actually have a sad.

      Not because that means they'll beat the Chiefs on a regular basis (no team needs Peyton to do such a thing). But because Peyton should have retired before he's paralyzed — facing Tamba Hali and Richard Seymour four times a year ain't gonna help that neck of his.

      Oh well.

      As far as God's Fave QB goes … well, to quote Brian Braindead Urlacher: "He's a helluva running back."

  21. smoothmineral

    "We Arizonans are tired of these gals flaunting their sexual behavior and leaving bottles of aspirin all over the place at work."

  22. chicken_thief

    Viagra is still covered though – right? So Sheriff Paul can still have sexytime fun with his muy calente amigo as long as he has little blue pills?

  23. MissTaken

    But men can still have their boner pills covered, right? We wouldn't want to trample on the rights of penises to get hard now would we?

    1. SorosBot

      Well of course not; being unable to get hard is a medical problem that must be dealt with immediately, but unwanted pregnancies are god's special gift to you ladies who all would be much happier just birthing babies all the time, and anyway need to be punished for being sluts and actually enjoying sex.

  24. memzilla

    I believe it is now time to declare the Arizona Statehouse a protected game reserve, and import a family of rabid honey badgers to breed therein.

    Not that I would wish any harm to come to the esteemed members of the legislature — just keep them away from their desks and that gavel.

    1. OhNoGuy

      I'd love to see them rising to speak with a Honey Badger's jaws clamped around their ballz. The speeches would be short and LOUD.

  25. MissTaken

    Can't we get the pharmaceutical companies to come up with a pill that gives men (and repressed women like Debbie Lesko, this bill's sponsor) multiple orgasms so they can quit fucking with my ability to have them without suffering an unwanted pregnancy?

    1. Iam_Who_Iam

      Exactly. I am so tired of the “Birth control is ok cuz women are taking it for reasons other than birth control.” You know what I want? I want women to stand up proud and say “I have sex, I like sex and I use the pill to not get pregnant and I am not ashamed.” Or shorter for the bumper sticker/ribbon campaign (the ribbon should look like a vagina btw): Proud to be on the Pill.

      Maybe we can get this gal to design the ribbon: http://www.etsy.com/listing/89270991/stargazer-li

      1. SorosBot

        Yeah; here was a good piece from Amanda Marcotte on how stupid this is:
        http://pandagon.net/index.php/site/comments/fight

        "The most common form this concession takes is well-meaning, and often person conceding the argument that women who have sex for pleasure are somehow less-than don't intend to concede it. But that's nonetheless what they're doing. That concession looks like this:

        "Some women aren't even taking the birth control pill for contraception! They need it for cramps/endometriosis/etc."

        Every time you say this, a right winger wanting to imply that women who have sex for pleasure are sluts gets his wings. This statement and all variations on it feeds into the right wing claim that a) contraception is not health care and b) that women who have sex for pleasure are so indefensible that you have to lean on off-label uses for a contraceptive drug to justify its existence."

        1. Iam_Who_Iam

          Thanks for the link, I completely agree. The 1950’s double standard is alive and well, I guarantee no one is going to be checking to see if the men folk have condoms in their wallet, but if a woman’s birth control pills fall out of her purse not only should she be fired, but she should have the scarlet A tattooed on her forehead. Male sexy time = wink, wink. Female sexy time = whore. It’s almost enough to get me to wear a bra again just so I can meet up with the ladies on main street for an old fashioned bra burning.

  26. kissawookiee

    I very much enjoyed the part of the bill (Subsection P, 1-12) that explicitly spells out how everything that might possibly be related to diabeetus MUST BE COVERED.

    1. Chichikovovich

      Eat all the Crispy Cremes and Fried Twinkies you want! Lie on the couch watching Maury and Jersey Shore 24/7 if that's your choice. Just don't ask me to pay for it!

  27. Chichikovovich

    No snark. A friend of Chichikovna's from medical school is a physician in Arizona. She was a superstar in med school, was chosen for one of the plum residencies, a spectacular clinician etc. In short, the kind of physician that every hospital hopes to have. She was raised in Arizona, her parents were accustomed to the warm climate and still lived there, so she moved back.

    This is a completely apolitical person. Chichikovna and the other med students would argue politics and she would move to another room. People would joke about what Arizona is like politically and she would just shrug it off with a "well, you don't have to pay attention to it".

    For the first time yesterday Chichikovna got an email that said, in essence: "OK, I have to leave this place now." Hospitals will be competing to take her. You have to wonder how far they will go toward religious authoritarianism before they notice that educated people of a sort that they really need simply won't go there.

    1. UnholyMoses

      "You have to wonder how far they will go toward religious authoritarianism before they notice that educated people of a sort that they really need simply won't go there."

      What makes you think the religious authoritarians believe they need Teh Smert Peeeple? In their precious little heads, God will take care of everything — he (or She, as is probably the case if a god actually exists) will cure the sick; stop things like wildfires, droughts, quickly disappearing fresh water sources; and just generally ensure The Chosen Ones Who Follow Him will be all dandy.

      And if he doesn't?

      Well, then someone was gay/had unapproved sexytime/masturbated/was not pious enough/liberal and everyone deserved to be punished for it.

      And all because some guys wrote a book in the Bronze Age as a reaction to the other religious and societal institutions around them, most of which they didn't like …

      1. spends2much

        Exactly! To become a physician in AZ, you will be required to read the big ole bible, and no other books. When someone comes to your office, you tell them to pray for recovery. Job done! Let's golf!

        1. NYNYNYjr

          And if a wealthy person (like said doctors) actually need treatment, they fly to California for it.

    2. pdiddycornchips

      Education has a well known liberal bias. Republicans are looking for leathery faced white folks with the IQ of tree stumps. Luckily, they're in abundant supply in the good state of AZ

  28. GeorgiaBurning

    So you can bring your gun to work, but you must register birth control prescriptions. I see this becoming a bad TV movie on "Lifetime"

  29. Toomush_Infer

    Here's their deal…rightwing think tanks long ago decided (using NRA studies) that you could count on over half the population (I.Q's under 100) to be stupid. Women, not so much. So just focus on the stupid and win….

      1. prommie

        War: America's method of learning geography. I think Ambrose Bierce said that, if he didn't, he should have.

  30. owhatever

    And while we're at it, our church has decided to stop accepting tax exemptions from the federal government because the money is devil woman tainted and the president is from Kenya. Now we can make out own rules and the commie gummint can't say a word. What? We're goin' broke?

  31. blitzgal

    Why are employers keeping track of what medical services their employees obtain? Will they be questioning men on their Viagra prescriptions? Will they deny sterilization procedures? Will they deny pre-natal care to unmarried women? Yes, let's open the door to letting an employer not only invade the privacy of our medical records but also make judgments on the services we obtain.

  32. chascates

    NEXT: Artizona to require women to obtain permission slips from employers before engaging in sex.

  33. IceCreamEmpress

    Oh, man! I can't wait for the Christian Science church to start firing people for buying aspirin!

  34. spends2much

    Something tells me there's no text in the bill allowing companies to fire dudes for buying condoms. Come on, Arizona, apply your Sharia Law fairly!

  35. pdiddycornchips

    Does Arizona have one of them anti-Sharia laws? Because this law is right out of the Taliban playbook.

  36. Jukesgrrl

    Maybe an armed volunteer corps. After all, we already have them patrolling the border. I'd be happy to accompany Mrs. Lesko on every visit she makes to her local pharmacy.

  37. MadBrahms

    My only response was to desperately post in French on facebook begging my Canadian friends to take me in until our country is no longer completely insane.

    White American Jesus help us all.

Comments are closed.