12:00 PM Eastern - Saturday, November 7, 2009

Republican Congressmen Repeatedly Interrupt Women Colleagues

The House began debating H.R. 3962, "The Affordable Health Care for America Act," a little before 11am today. If you were watching C-SPAN, you might be wondering if it's normal for members of Congress to show such disrespect to one another by repeatedly shouting "I OBJECT" over their colleagues. You might also be wondering why Republican Congressmen are so adamantly opposed to allowing women in Congress to speak about gender discrimination in health care.

At this time, the House is engaged in determining the rules governing the debate. It was originally predicted by the Washington Post to be voted on between 10 and 11 a.m., but Republicans have risen to interrupt several Democratic Congresswomen before the Chair.

These women in Congress have risen to insert into the record a brief statement about women's health care issues - ranging from discrimination by health insurers to breast cancer research and treatment - but Republicans in Congress, like Rep. Tom Price, have repeatedly interrupted by shouting "I OBJECT, I OBJECT, I OBJECT," over their women colleagues. You really have to watch it to believe it:

Rep. Lois Capps and other women in Congress were rising to speak on issues that impact millions of American women - and how "The Affordable Health Care for America Act" will address these issues.

Today's GOP behavior follows a longer narrative of Republican disinterest in addressing gender discrimination in health care, including Sen. Kyl's remarks on why insurers shouldn't have to cover maternity care, and the introduction of the House GOP health care bill - which doesn't contain a single mention of "women" in its pages (aside from language on abortion).

Special note: when House Republicans stood up to insert their own remarks to the record, not a single Democrat objected.

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