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Mitt Romney Is Financially Invested In The Birth Control He Seeks To Restrict

Posted by on Feb. 8, 2012 at 12:52 PM
  • 8 Replies


Mitt Romney has attacked the Obama administration’s regulation requiring employers and insurers to provide reproductive health care services — including contraception — by arguing that the rule is undermining the religious liberties of Catholics and imposing “a secular vision on Americans who believe that they should not have their religious freedom taken away.” As ThinkProgress has reported, Romney’s newfound sensitivities contradict his record as governor of Massachusetts — where he accepted a very similar contraception equity law — and his previous public commitments to increasing public funding for birth control. In 2005, Romney even asked the Massachusetts Department of Health to issue regulations requiring all hospitals to issue emergency contraception to rape victims, without providing an exception for Catholic hospitals.

Now, an examination of Romney’s financial investments reveals that the very same GOP frontrunner who is now petitioning the White House to extend the regulation’s conscience clause and exclude more women from the benefits of birth control is himself invested in and profiting from pharmaceutical companies that produce the frequently prescribed and extremely common medication:

Romney’s Goldman Sachs 2002 Exchange Place Fund, valued at over a million dollars in 2010, brought in nearly $600,000 in gains in 2010 and is invested in:

- Watson Pharmaceuticals: manufacturer of nine forms of emergency contraception (which Romney incorrectly identifies as “abortifacients“).
- Johnson & Johnson: launched the first U.S. prescription birth control product in 1931 and produces various forms of birth control.
- Merck: produces various forms of birth control
- Mylan: produces birth control medication and filed the first application for a generic birth control pill last year.
- Pfizer: a contraception producer that recently had to recall about a million packs of birth-control pills that weren’t packaged correctly.

Romney often disclaims any responsibility for or knowledge of his own investments by claiming that they are held in a private trust. But since filing his legally-required public financial disclosure reports and certifying that the information is “true, complete, and correct” to the best of his knowledge, the trust ceased to be a “blind trust” as he knew what was in it. Romney signed such disclosure forms last August and during his unsuccessful 2008 presidential bid in August 2007.

http://thinkprogress.org/health/2012/02/08/420990/mitt-romney-is-financially-invested-in-the-birth-control-he-now-opposes/

by on Feb. 8, 2012 at 12:52 PM
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Replies (1-8):
nanaofsix531
by on Feb. 8, 2012 at 12:59 PM
I wonder how this is going to get twisted into he had no idea.Maybe it has been taken out of context????????????? LOL
Meadowchik
by Gold Member on Feb. 8, 2012 at 1:14 PM
3 moms liked this

Lots of grasping for straws here, I see.

Romney is invested in pharma companies who manufacture birth control, among other drugs.  It's not at all hypocritical to do that and have a position that Obama should allow exceptions of conscience.

I had my tubes tied last year.  That wouldn't make me hypocritical if I supported the right of Catholics to withdraw support from practices they disagree with in conscience. 

A majority of Catholics use non-natural family planning forms of birth control.  They can still, however, support the right of a Church to not be penalized for conscientious objections to providing birth control products and services, and they can do so without being hypocritical.


Jambo4
by Platinum Member on Feb. 8, 2012 at 1:28 PM
1 mom liked this

 LOL.. yeah Meadow I was thinking the same thing. 

new_mom808
by Bronze Member on Feb. 8, 2012 at 3:03 PM

 I agree that the financial ties are in no way a conflict of interest.

The fact that he was also not willing to allow for Catholic exceptions in MA, is a bit concerning.

jewjewbee
by Silver Member on Feb. 8, 2012 at 3:20 PM
1 mom liked this

all that money to keep up with, give him a break. A million here, a million there...who knows what all he owns.

as long as he keeps the drug company in business people are working. He's doing more for the economy than Obama right now just by owning the stock.

Jambo4
by Platinum Member on Feb. 8, 2012 at 4:15 PM
1 mom liked this

 

Quoting new_mom808:

 I agree that the financial ties are in no way a conflict of interest.

The fact that he was also not willing to allow for Catholic exceptions in MA, is a bit concerning.

 Not willing?


 

Quote:
Romney's strong record on religious liberty from Catholic vote.org


The Globe story highlights Catholic activist C.J. Doyle's complaint that Governor Romney decided he could no longer fight a new law requiring Catholic hospitals to provide these abortifacients. Romney's legal counsel said the law provided absolutely no religious exemption at all, so fighting the Constitutionality of the law on these grounds would go nowhere. Now, perhaps the legal counsel's analysis is wrong.

But you almost have to get to the second page of the Globe story before you realize this crucial fact: Governor Mitt Romney vetoed this legislation. That's right. The Massachusetts legislature passed the bill. Romney vetoed it. Then the Legislature overrode his veto and the bill became law.

From the Globe in September 2005:

The Senate voted, 37 to 0, to reject Romney's veto, and the House followed suit with a 139-to-16 tally. Supporters needed a two-thirds majority in each chamber to overrule the governor.

So Mitt Romney is not the bad guy in this story. Who is? How about 90% of the politicians in the State House? How every single State Senator. It is indeed a sad fact that well over two-thirds of the Massachusetts Legislature wanted this onerous legislation. But give credit where credit is due: Romney vetoed this bill.


 

TruthSeeker.
by CM Junkie on Feb. 8, 2012 at 7:00 PM

 

Quoting new_mom808:

 I agree that the financial ties are in no way a conflict of interest.

The fact that he was also not willing to allow for Catholic exceptions in MA, is a bit concerning.

 This is my concern also.

Jambo4
by Platinum Member on Feb. 8, 2012 at 10:25 PM

 

Quoting TruthSeeker.:

 

Quoting new_mom808:

 I agree that the financial ties are in no way a conflict of interest.

The fact that he was also not willing to allow for Catholic exceptions in MA, is a bit concerning.

 This is my concern also.

 See my comment above yours for clarification of misleading allegation... or once again... 

Regarding the smear that Romney supposedly forced Catholic hospitals to provide abortion pills:

Romney spoke with his veto pen - he vetoed the legislation which would require hospitals to provide "morning after" pills. But the legislature overrode the veto.

The only role Romney had in the matter was enforcing the law, which he was bound to do by his oath of office.
...
The confusion results because Romney tried to craft an exemption for Catholic hospitals but ultimately realized that the exemption was not legally sound. There was one clear obstacle to Romney’s preferred exemption: the legislature has authority to supersede previous laws with new laws, and the clear intent of the legislature was for this bill to supersede any contradictory statutes or provisions rather than to work in harmony with the older statute. Thus, if Romney were to challenge the intended effect of the law, he would have had to argue disingenuously in court that the older provision and the new provision could be reconciled when that was likely not true. It is perhaps not surprising that Romney felt bound by the new law and it was in this context that Romney told the Department of Public Health they had to enforce the intent of the law even though he disagreed with it.

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