Georgetown University Law Student Sandra Fluke testified in an unofficial House hearing last week that the cost of contraception created a significant financial burden — up to $3,000 over the course of law school — that prohibited one of her fellow students from obtaining hormonal contraception. Because of a medical issue, not having access to birth control ultimately resulted in her losing an ovary. Some conservatives had a word for that condition: slut.
Fluke was specifically referring to hormonal contraception to treat medical needs beyond pregnancy prevention, but this week, conservatives interpreted Fluke’s discussion of a financial burden as an opening to judge young women’s sex lives.
Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh cited the fact that women needed contraception coverage to mean that they are “sluts” or “prostitutes” (via Media Matters):
On Fox News Monday, anchor Trace Gallagher assumed the $3,000 was going toward condoms. “Exactly what’s going on at Georgetown Law School?” Gallagher said. “When do they study”?
Update 12:34pm: Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) condemned Limbaugh’s statement on the Senate Floor Thursday morning before the Senate voted to table the Blunt Amendment, which would have rolled back the administration’s contraception rule. Watch:
Pema Levy is a News Writer at TPM covering the 2012 election. Before coming to TPM, Pema was an assistant editor at The American Prospect where she wrote about politics and the economy.