Rep. Goodlatte’s weird “abortion ban as jobs plan” comment was not made in a vacuum


As AZBlueMeanie reported yesterday:

Apparenlty the NRCC forgot to school their male members of Congress that they should also not say stupid things in open committee hearings with C-Span cameras rolling.

You can't make this shit up. Congressman’s New Jobs Plan: Deny Women Access To Abortion So They Can Make More Babies:

During a debate over an anti-abortion bill currently advancing in Congress, Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) suggested that Republicans support restricting access to abortion because it will ultimately benefit the economy if women have more children. Goodlatte noted that carrying pregnancies to term “very much promotes job creation.”

Goodlatte made the comments while presiding over a committee mark-up of the “No Taxpayer Funding For Abortion Act,” or HR 7, on Wednesday afternoon. That legislation would dramatically restrict women’s access to affordable abortion care by imposing restrictions on insurance coverage and tax credits for the procedure. Goodlatte, who chairs the House Judiciary Committee, advanced HR 7 by scheduling it for a full committee mark-up on Wednesday.

Explaining his support for the measure, Goodlatte [said]:

“I would suggest that it is very much the case that those of us in the majority support this legislation because it is the morally right thing to do but it is also very very true that having a growing population and having new children brought into the world is not harmful to job creation,” he said. “It very much promotes job creation for all the care and services and so on that need to be provided by a lot of people to raise children.”

This is nothing new with anti-choicers, who have been obsessed with "low birth rates" for decades and are furiously peddling the panic in an obvious attempt to get the economic elites to support their policies. Given how much money right wing bigwigs like the Koch Bros. have pumped into the campaigns of anti-choice politicians and legislation, the strategy appears to be working at least somewhat. 

Now, if you have the reasoning and arithmetic skills of a five year old, it would seem absurd to think the human population, having gone from 1.5 billion worldwide in 1900 to over 7 billion now, is in the throes of precipitous demographic doom but that is exactly what anti-choicers would have you believe.

A sampling of the evidence:

A search of "low birth rate" on, a preeminent North American anti-choice website, yields thousands of hits of mostly similar articles sounding the alarm over a dearth of babies and blaming the usual suspects – female independence, the sexual revolution, and that tool of Satan known as contraception. 

Jonathan Last's What to Expect When No One's Expecting. Last's book is full of doom and gloom over the horrific prospect declining birth rates and was met with much fanfare. Last pretended he was just stating the facts and didn't have a dog in the fight but was revealed to be an anti-choicer

The regular appearance of articles handwringing over how selfish, selfish women are refusing to produce future workers and consumers, including this one in Newsweek, which breathlessly declared the choice to be childless as "bad for America".   

Practically every Ross Douthat NYT column ever. And his anti-choice colleague David Brooks also weighed in with his deep concern over the horrific possiblity of there not being an abundance of cheap servants at some point in the future. 

Concerted efforts to downplay or deny the threat of overpopulation,* often marshalling dubious research. 

Other Republican politicians denouncing birth control using similar terms as Rep. Goodlatte. 

Lest you think I'm being hyperbolic when I say they are pushing the elites to embrace anti-choice policies, consider Russia's recent crackdown on reproductive rights in the face of "low birth rates" (It's worth noting that the brutal anti-gay policies enacted in that country were also justified by "low birth rates".) South Korea recently began forcing it's long-ignored abortion ban because of, you guessed it, under the strong encouragement of anti-choicers. It can happen here and one could argue it already is, considering the thousands of restrictions on abortion and contraception access that have passed in the states since the GOP sweep in 2010.


*In fairness, anti-choicers aren't the only people in denial about overpopulation and laboring under the illusion we should be increasing the population. I'm constantly arguing with liberals who insist our economic system will collapse if we aren't producing at least three workers for every retiree each generation and that somehow "technology" and "all the future geniuses who will be born" will save our species from the ravages of climate and resource depletion. My response is that if we were at anything resembling global full employment now I might buy that we need to pump up the production of human beings but since we're not, and technology is improving labor productivity and replacing human labor outright at a dramatic pace, I'm unconvinced we need an upsurge in births. 




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AZ BlueMeanie
The Blue Meanie is an Arizona citizen who wishes, for professional reasons, to remain anonymous when blogging about politics. Armed with a deep knowledge of the law, politics and public policy, as well as pen filled with all the colors stolen from Pepperland, the Blue Meanie’s mission is to pursue and prosecute the hypocrites, liars, and fools of politics and the media – which, in practical terms, is nearly all of them. Don’t even try to unmask him or he’ll seal you in a music-proof bubble and rendition you to Pepperland for a good face-stomping. Read blog posts by the infamous and prolific AZ Blue Meanie here.


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