Bobby Jindal: Let’s Make Birth Control An Over The Counter Drug

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Democrats played birth control politics in the last election cycle to great degree of success. They successfully convinced a large chunk of the electorate that Republicans are fighting a “war on women” because they a) don’t think birth control should be an entitlement and b) people who have a moral objection to birth control shouldn’t be forced to pay for it.

This, of course, was nonsense but the Democrats made it an emotional argument, not a reasoned and logical argument, and in the end the emotional argument got more traction (as it often does with the masses).

But Bobby Jindal has a way to cut through the nonsense. Why not make birth control cheaper, easier to get and a personal choice by allowing it to be sold over the counter?

As an unapologetic pro-life Republican, I also believe that every adult (18 years old and over) who wants contraception should be able to purchase it. But anyone who has a religious objection to contraception should not be forced by government health-care edicts to purchase it for others. And parents who believe, as I do, that their teenage children shouldn’t be involved with sex at all do not deserve ridicule.

Let’s ask the question: Why do women have to go see a doctor before they buy birth control? There are two answers. First, because big government says they should, even though requiring a doctor visit to get a drug that research shows is safe helps drive up health-care costs. Second, because big pharmaceutical companies benefit from it. They know that prices would be driven down if the companies had to compete in the marketplace once their contraceptives were sold over the counter.

So at present we have an odd situation. Thanks to President Obama and the pro-choice lobby, women can buy the morning-after pill over the counter without a prescription, but women cannot buy oral contraceptives over the counter unless they have a prescription. Contraception is a personal matter—the government shouldn’t be in the business of banning it or requiring a woman’s employer to keep tabs on her use of it. If an insurance company or those purchasing insurance want to cover birth control, they should be free to do so. If a consumer wants to buy birth control on her own, she should be free to do so.

Makes sense to me. I’m pro-life (because the science is clear on when life begins), but I don’t see the problem with using condoms or medication to ensure that sex doesn’t result in a life being created. I’m also pro-markets, which means that I support knocking down barriers between willing sellers and willing buyers.

If a woman, or anyone else, wants to buy conception why not allow them to participate in a free, competitive market with as little red tape as possible?

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com. In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters. He writes a weekly column for several North Dakota newspapers, and also serves as a policy fellow for the North Dakota Policy Council.

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