To ‘all the single ladies’ and African Americans
The Supreme Court had one helluva week.
First, in the Burwell v. Hobby Lobby case, the court decided that it could not uphold the Affordable Care Act’s contraception mandate. In a 5-4 vote, the court held the federal government could not require employers in closely held companies to provide birth control or contraceptive coverage to employees.
Religious objections will effectively win out over the needs of a woman and a family.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote a dissent that called the high court’s decision “radical” and “startling” in its breadth. “An IUD is nearly equivalent to a month’s full-time pay for workers earning the minimum wage,” writes Ginsburg who believes the decision denies women who «do not hold their employer’s belief” access to basic health care.
In another blow, Harris v. Quinn, an Illinois case, the Supreme Court decided thousands of home health care workers could not be required to pay public employee union fees. In 2012, Michigan ended the practice and stopped allowing unions to deduct dues. Both cases are considered a loss for organized labor, a powerful force in the Democratic Party.
Conservative Republicans are celebrating the victory of “religious liberty” and certainly the organized labor hit. With upcoming elections, Republicans might be better served to stay quiet.
Jesse Waters went on Fox News this week and said this about the Hobby Lobby case:
“I call them the Beyonce voters, the single ladies. Obama won the single ladies by 76 percent last time, and they made up about a quarter of the electorate. They depend on government, because they’re not depending on their husbands. They need things like contraception, healthcare, and they love to talk about equal pay.”
Waters’ comments are reminiscent of Ronald Reagan’s welfare queen remark, a reference to Black women who game the welfare system. The Beyonce comment is not just racist and generally disparaging to women, but it is also misogynistic and wholly inaccurate. Not only is Beyonce married, she is also well paid. She is an anomaly. Not just for Black women, but all human beings in general.
Waters shows just how misguided Republicans like him are. This won’t win them any elections.
According to a recent New York Times analysis, single ladies — women, actually — are, next to African Americans, a hugely important voting demographic for the Democratic Party: “The decline of marriage over the last generation has helped create an emerging voting bloc of unmarried women who are profoundly reshaping the American electorate to the advantage, recent elections suggest, of the Democratic Party.”
Waters seems to hit both groups in his comments. Yet, both are also not as likely to vote in midterm elections.
The Supreme Court decisions fell along party lines.
We need a more moderate and informed political class to get civilized Supreme Court decisions, something we cannot achieve if women and African Americans don’t vote.