October 31, 2013
 Kathleen Sebelius, the secretary of health & human services (Jim Bourg/Reuters)
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (Jim Bourg/Reuters)

Where gender issues and Obamacare intersect, “Fox & Friends” obsesses.

In this morning’s edition, “Fox & Friends” co-host Steve Doocy sat down with anti-government-regulation stalwart John Stossel of Fox Business Network. Equipped with a stack of papers to emphasize the red tape of the Affordable Care Act, Stossel pooh-poohed the problems with HealthCare.gov, the horrible Obamacare Web site, and proclaimed that “central planning is the problem.”

Gender issues were just a hop away. Stossel continued: “Yesterday, President Obama stood in front of a bunch of women in Massachusetts and said, no longer will those evil insurance companies be able to charge you more.” Turning to Doocy, he asked, “But, when did you last go to the doctor?”

“When did I go to the doctor?” responded Doocy, apparently blanking at the question.

“Elisabeth could answer quite quickly,” rejoined Stossel, referring to “Fox & Friends” co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck. “Women go to the doctor much more often than men. Maybe they’re smarter or maybe they’re hypochondriacs. They live longer, who knows. But if it’s insurance, you ought to be able to charge the people who use the services more, more.”

Rather than raising questions relating to preventive care and social burden-sharing, Doocy slipped into his liberal parody voice, saying, “But John, you’re not paying attention. This administration, this president, wants to make everything fair. It’s not fair if you pay less than she does.”

As explained in this New York Times story, women historically have borne greater health-care insurance costs than men, a disparity that Obamacare phases out in 2014 out by banning what’s known as “gender rating.”

But who needs the New York Times when you have “Fox & Friends”? Back in August, the show landed on this same topic, with a male guest who explained, “We only have the prostate. Women have the breasts, they have the ovaries, they have the uterus, they get checked in every part . . . ”

There you have it.

(h/t Mediaite’s @noahcrothman)

Erik Wemple writes the Erik Wemple blog, where he reports and opines on media organizations of all sorts.