Joe Scarborough - Caricature

Joe Scarborough – Caricature (Photo credit: DonkeyHotey)

On similarly fake grounds, Republicans use the Catholic bishops’ opposition to contraception as an excuse based on “religious freedom” to oppose the Affordable Care Act. The bishops’ case is phony—no one is forced to use or not use contraception by the act. But bishops say that countenancing the act offends the bishops who follow Rome in condemning it (not actual Catholics who overwhelmingly exercise their right of conscience in using contraceptives).

The defense of victimized Catholic bishops reached a comic peak when Jeb Bush (one of Scarborough’s moderate Republicans) speculated that Obama closed our Vatican embassy (he didn’t) as “retribution for Catholic organizations opposing Obamacare.” The religious right is alive and well in all kinds of Republicans—in global warming deniers, whose attitude toward climate science resembles their denial of evolution; in voter restrictions to exclude “un-Americans”; in those who oppose gay marriage, the rights of Muslims and atheists, or the need for sex education in the schools.–from “Can He [Joe Scarborough] Save the GOP From Itself,” NYRB

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