The Obama White House has little interest in reaching a real compromise on the controversial rule mandating religious organizations provide birth control coverage to employees because it believes it has the power to trample on religious freedom, Rep. Tom Price, R-Ga., tells Newsmax.TV.
Price was commenting on recent reports that the White House planned to offer a compromise on the controversial requirement. The rule, first proposed as part of President Barack Obama’s sweeping health-care law, would require employers to provide birth control coverage along with the “morning after pill” and sterilization.
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While the provision does not cover churches, it does apply to religiously affiliated organizations such as universities and hospitals.
“I think it isn’t a compromise at all and if it’s a compromise it’s just rhetorical,” Price said in an interview at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington. “The fact of the matter is this is an administration who has decided it … it has the power to be able to determine what is the definition of health care and health coverage for you and your family, me and my family and every single American and that is simply wrong.
“They believe they have so much power that they can trample on the First Amendment rights and religious freedom of certain individuals in this country. So this isn’t about abortion, this isn’t about birth control; this is about who are we as a society going to allow to define what health care and health coverage is.”
Price, a medical doctor, said the birth control rule is “just the tip of ice berg” and the last thing patients want is the government to decide what kind of health care and coverage they get.
On other issues, Price said:
- Any surprise in the president’s 2013 budget, due to be unveiled next week, would be that it included a “decrease in the amount of deficit spending,” noting the budget will mark the “fourth straight year of trillion dollar deficits.”
- “The economy is improving, and thank goodness it is, but it is improving in spite of the administration not because of the administration.”
- The Democratically controlled Senate has blocked some 40 pieces of legislation designed to get spending down, the economy rolling, and promote job creation but “they sit on Harry Reid’s desk.”
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