In a Senate hearing on energy yesterday, Kentucky senator Rand Paul demanded that a woman explain to him why his toilet doesn't work but she still gets to have abortions. Is there no justice in this world?
Watch as Rand harangues Kathleen Hogan, deputy assistant energy secretary for efficiency, about how "insulting" it is that he has to flush more than once while women get to have all the fun choices. She manages to keep a straight face until the end.
Paul asks her if she's pro-choice, and given that this is a hearing about energy efficiency, she tells him she's pro-choice on lightbulbs. He protests, "You're really anti-choice on any other consumer item we've listed here, including light bulbs, refrigerators, toilets. You can't go around your house without being told what to buy. You restrict my purchases. You don't care about my choices, you don't care about the consumer, frankly. You raise the cost of all the items with all your rules, all your notions that you know what's best for me."
Word to Rand Paul: No one is trying to put anyone in jail for not using energy-efficient lightbulbs. But more than a handful of his Republican colleagues are trying to find ways to jail women for having abortions or even miscarriages.
Are you wondering where Senator Paul's theory of consumer freedom ends? At a woman's body, of course. From his official site:
I will always vote for any and all legislation that would end abortion or lead us in the direction of ending abortion...I strongly oppose any federal funding for abortion and will stop the flow of tax dollars to groups like Planned Parenthood, who perform or advocate abortions...I believe in a Human Life Amendment and a Life at Conception Act as federal solutions to the abortion issue.
Yes, that's right, Paul supports overriding states' rights in favor of a federal solution to criminalize women's reproductive choices. His home state of Kentucky has already voted to restrict private sector insurance plans from covering "elective abortions." (There are indications that Paul's views were once more consistent, leaving restrictions to the state, but he has long since pandered that away.)
So let's get the esteemed Senator's libertarian position straight. Freedom to buy things that take an unnecessary toll on the ecosystem for generations to come: pro-freedom, pro-life. Freedom to place as many onerous, expensive, paternalistic restrictions as possible on women's reproductive organs: same. Now that's some bullshit.