November 27, 2011

E.J. Dionne Jr. missed a key point in his column regarding the Conference of Catholic Bishops’ push to allow certain employers to block insurance plans from covering contraception [“Obama’s Catholic challenge,” op-ed, Nov. 24].

Here is what the so-called “compromise” that the bishops want would mean: Millions of women who work as nurses, administrative staffers, janitors and professors will lose out on the promise of insurance coverage of birth control. Keep in mind, even the vast majority of Catholic women use contraception, underscoring how out of touch the bishops are.

Denying these women access to birth control because their bosses oppose contraception would be not a compromise but a missed opportunity by the Obama administration to strengthen its record in support of women’s health and privacy.

Nancy Keenan, Washington

The writer is president of NARAL Pro-Choice America.