Senior Adviser to President Talks up ‘Free’ Birth Control, Athletes, Celebrity Support for Obamacare
Published on February 21, 2014 · Filed Under Uncategorized
by Sarah Hurtubise
(WASHINGTON) White House senior adviser Valerie Jarrett touted Obamacare’s contraception mandate Friday, emphasizing free birth control and celebrities to women’s magazine Cosmopolitan.
Oral birth control pills. February 2012. Author: Bryan calabro. Wikimedia Commons.
“All insurance plans are required to cover contraception without a copay — for free. Free!” Jarrett exclaimed. “And if your doctor thinks you need a particular brand but it’s not on your plan, then the insurance company has to cover that, too.”
Jarrett’s emphasis on birth control was particularly fitting for her interview with Cosmo, a magazine best-known for its monthly, gratuitous columns that detail hundreds of ways to have sex. The column coincided with a new White House video featuring President Barack Obama once again marketing the exchanges.
“Nearly six in ten Americans who are uninsured will be able to get covered for $100 dollars or less,” Obama promised.
The close adviser to the president also noted that insurance companies are no longer allowed to charge women higher premiums, but did not include the caveat that women use more health care services and cost more to insure than men. She did, however, take time to list the many celebrities the Obama administration has convinced to promote Obamacare as well.
“Julia Louis-Dreyfus was at the state dinner for the president of France and we had a great talk about the issue, and she was part of our Valetine’s Day campaign on Twitter,” Jarrett gushed. “Mindy Kaling, Amy Poehler, Sarah Silverman, Pharrell Williams, Beyonce, Neil Patrick Harris, and Adam Levine — so many people with reach into the young adult community have lent their support.”
Obamacare exchanges are lacking in young adult enrollees across the country. The administration predicted it would need 38 to 39 percent of exchange participants to fall between the ages of 18 to 34 years so that the healthier young adults balance out the risk pool and lower costs.
The requirements that insurance companies must offer birth control at no cost have spawned a series of lawsuits against its constitutionality, on the grounds that it will force religious institutions and employers to violate their beliefs.
The case of the Little Sisters of the Poor, an order of Catholic nuns, is now before the Supreme Court. The Obama administration offered an accommodation to religious institutions only which allows them to outsource payments for birth control to a third party benefits administrator, but the Little Sisters argue this requires the use of their plan information for contraception.
The owners of Hobby Lobby and a Pennsylvania cabinetmaking company Conestoga Wood Specialties have also filed suit against the mandate and both arguments will be heard by the Supreme Court in March.