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Robertson: Calling Fluke a ‘slut’ and a ‘prostitute’ only ‘a little bit over the top’

By Stephen C. Webster
Wednesday, March 7, 2012 13:32 EDT
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Televangelist Pat Robertson speaks to conservative author Jerry Bell. Screenshot via YouTube.
 
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In a segment broadcast by a Christian television network on Wednesday, televangelist and longtime icon of America’s religious right Pat Robertson suggested that Republican shock jock Rush Limbaugh’s characterization of a Gergetown law student as a “slut” and a “prostitute” was just “a little bit over the top,” but went on to imply that he was right on the money.

“You know there was a woman, the law student at Georgetown University who appeared before a congressional committee, and she said that students needed $3,000 a year for contraception and that they couldn’t afford it,” he said, speaking to conservative author Jerry Bell.

“As I understand, the Catholic school was supposed to pay for it,” he went on. “Now Catholics say that fornication, if you will, sex outside of marriage, is a sin. This woman is saying ‘I’m going to be committing sin, but I want you to pay for my sin.’ Now am I overstating that? Rush Limbaugh got a little bit over the top on that thing, but is that what it amounted to?”

Limbaugh has been under rhetorical fire in recent weeks after he called Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke a “slut” and a “prostitute,” and demanded she publish sex tapes online. So far, over 40 of his advertisers have dropped out amid a boycott campaign aimed at knocking his show off the air.

Unfortunately for Robertson, his description Wednesday is a woeful mischaracterization of Congressional testimony given by Fluke, who told lawmakers that students attending law school may ultimately be out $3,000 for contraceptive services over the entire tenure of their college education — not a single year.

Furthermore, her testimony pertained to the use of birth control pills not to prevent pregnancy, but to prevent ovarian cysts. She testified that a nameless friend had developed those cysts after the university refused to cover contraceptives through her private insurance policy, citing moral grounds. The woman ultimately had her ovary surgically removed, Fluke said.

Fluke’s testimony came after she was denied a chance to speak during a Republican-run Congressional session which saw an all-male panel discuss their objections to birth control being paid for by private health insurance. The men, from various religious institutions, each said they held strong moral objections to a recent rule codified in health reform laws that would ensure insurance plans offer 100 percent payment for female contraceptives.

That rule, however, would not require religious non-profits to pay for contraceptives. In instances where an employer files a moral objection, the insurance provider itself will pick up the full bill — a rule change that effectively nullifies the Republicans’ whole argument.

This video is from The 700 Club, broadcast Wednesday, March 7, 2012.

(H/T: Right Wing Watch)

Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
 
 
 
 
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