Patterico's Pontifications


Sandra Fluke: Your Health Care Should Cover Gender Reassignment Surgery

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 5:58 pm

So we are now forced to endure the women of the View and Jake Tapper (Jake Tapper!) interviewing Sandra Fluke without asking her any questions about her activism, or the facts concerning how easily it is to actually get birth control ($9 per month for birth control pills in Georgetown).

Here is a new part of the story for Big Media to ignore.

The College Politico has discovered something very interesting about Ms. Fluke’s beliefs:

[B]irth control is not all that Ms. Fluke believes private health insurance must cover. She also, apparently, believes that it is discrimination deserving of legal action if “gender reassignment” surgeries are not covered by employer provided health insurance. She makes these views clear in an article she co-edited with Karen Hu in the Georgetown Journal of Gender and the Law. The title of the article . . . is “Employment Discrimination Against LGBTQ Persons” and was published in the Journal’s 2011 Annual Review.

Via The Other McCain, who observes:

This law school journal article is the sort of thing that might have been discovered about Fluke’s background, had the Democrats who put Fluke forward as a witness done so with the usual 72-hour advance notice. Here’s one brief quote from the article:

Transgender persons wishing to undergo the gender reassignment process frequently face heterosexist employer health insurance policies that label the surgery as cosmetic or medically unnecessary and therefore uncovered.

Now, imagine Fluke trying to defend this language about “heterosexist” policies in a public hearing, with Republican members of the committee questioning her about whether religious institutions (or private businesses, or taxpayers) should also be required to foot the bill for “gender reassignment.”

Congratulations, America: You’ve been scammed!

You know who I bet would have a good gag about this development?

Rush Limbaugh.

Does he have the balls to make the joke?

(Do you? Comments are open below!)

Super Tuesday preview: The 20 percent solution

Filed under: 2012 Election — Karl @ 6:42 am

[Posted by Karl]

Yesterday, Mitt Romney hosted a pancake breakfast in Georgia (a state Newt Gingrich is comfortably ahead in the polls), while Rick Santorum spoke at the capitol in Oklahoma (a state where Santorum is comfortably ahead in the polls).  If you ever wondered what drives these sorts of scheduling decisions, as Cox Radio’s Jamie Dupree reminded his Twitter followers, it has a fair amount to do with what I will very loosely call The 20% Solution.

The RNC, in its infinite wisdom, decided to change the delegate selection rules for this cycle, in hopes of prolonging the nominating campaign and thereby generating interest and grassroots base-building a la the Obama-Clinton tussle in 2008.  (They accomplished one of those, anyway.)  The 2012 rules thus dictated that Super Tuesday states have proportional allocation of delegates.  However, these states generally took advantage of the fact that the rules did not require strict proportional allocation.

Thus, in Georgia, the allocation of 42 district delegates depends very much on whether a candidate receives more than 50% of the vote, but if no candidate receives a majority in a district, three delegates are split 2-1 between the top two finishers.  Another 31 at-large delegates are awarded to candidates receiving over 20% of the vote.  Looking at the Georgia polling, it becomes easy to see Romney invested in Georgia in hopes of keeping Newt below 50% where he can, and perhaps in hopes of keeping Rick below 20% overall.

In Oklahoma, the allocation 15 district and 25 at-large delegates depend on whether a candidate gets 50% or how many candidates get more than 15%.  Looking at Oklahoma polling, Santorum may be hoping to keep Romney below the 15% threshold.  This makes Tom Coburn’s late endorsement of Romney a potentially key get for Mitt.  Santorum also may have hoped to keep Romney below a key 20% threshold in Tennessee, but polling suggests a late Romney surge there.

In the key state of Ohio, 48 district delegates are awarded on a winner-take-all system per district, while 15 at-large delegates will likely be allocated based on a 20% threshold.  Ohio polling suggests Newt will win few delegates in this system, which makes Santorum’s failure to meet the state’s eligibility requirements in three districts and to file a full slate in six others particularly damaging to Rick.

Lastly, as you may recall, Rick and Newt failed to qualify for the ballot in Virginia, and the polling suggests Romney will win all 49 delegates.  The remaining big prize is Massachusetts (41 delegates), which may be almost as lopsided.

In short, the rules matter and elections favor those with the money and organization to work them (despite complaints from Romney and his supporters about them).  They also explain why Mitt Romney spent Sunday morning serving pancakes in Snellville.


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