WASHINGTON, June 20, 2012 — Planned Parenthood has upped the ante in the campaign wars, by sending out a woman costumed as a package of birth control pills to shadow GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney from Oregon to Ohio to New Hampshire and now Michigan, highlighting his opposition to contraception.
Called Pillamina, the mascot plans to trail Romney wherever he is campaigning, including today in Troy, Michigan where he will be attending a fundraiser this evening. Pillamina is a soft, almost plush, life-size birth control pack, usually pink, but sometimes blue. Pillamina is seen as a way to let Romney and Republicans know that women are watching.
Planned Parenthood Action Fund President Cecile Richards said that her organization is taking this action to stress the fact that birth control is “an economic issue for women —period. That’s something that President Obama clearly understands and that Mitt Romney simply doesn’t.”
Birth control advocates across the country are now following Mitt Romney on the road to let him know that “his opposition to birth control is harmful and out of touch with their needs.”
The action highlights the commitment of Planned Parenthood to fight back this election, including the $1.4 million ad buy, which slams Romney and supports President Obama.
What initiated Pillamina’s pilgrimage is Romney’s objection to Obama’s birth control coverage mandate, which he has labeled a violation of religious freedom. Add to this, Romney also is against Planned Parenthood and has vowed “to get rid” of the organization if he is elected president.
Richards also pointed out that Romney has said he has doubts that the Supreme Court decision to strike down state restrictions on birth control was the correct decision and, of course, he would like to see Roe v. Wade overturned.
This has propelled many women to move into protest mode, chanting, wherever Romney goes: “Get your Mitts off our birth control.”
Michigan was selected as a stop for Pillamina’s appearance because of the brouhaha that erupted last week in the Michigan state legislature when two Democratic women legislators were banned from the floor for daring to use the words “vagina” and “vasectomies” during a debate over abortion.
How very different are our times from 1970 when Pillamina first appeared with President Nixon who famously said, “No American woman should be denied access to family planning assistance because of her economic condition.”
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