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Lisa Murkowski Regrets Her Republican Political Bedfellows

Igor Volsky:

Murkowski Regrets Voting For Blunt's 'Religious Conscience' Measure: 'I Have Let These Women Down': Alaska Republican Lisa Murkowski told a local newspaper yesterday that she regrets her vote for the so-called Blunt amendment, the GOP’s alternative to President Obama’s rule requiring employers to provide contraception coverage as part of their health care insurance plans. Under the amendment, which the Senate tabled with the help of just one Republican, employers would have been empowered to deny coverage of health services to their employees on the basis of personal moral objections.

“I have never had a vote I’ve taken where I have felt that I let down more people that believed in me,” Murkowski told the Anchorage Daily News’ Julia O’Malley, claiming that the amendment’s language went “overboard”:

“If you had it to do over again, having had the weekend that you had with women being upset about the vote, do you think you would have voted the same?” I asked.

“No,” she said.

Murkowski said she believes contraception should be covered and affordable, except when it comes to churches and religiously affiliated organizations, like some universities and hospitals. She sponsored a contraception coverage bill as a state legislator in 2002. That bill exempted “religious employers.” She said her position hasn’t changed.

“I have always said if you don’t like abortion the best way to deal with it is to not have unwanted pregnancies in the first place,” she said. “How do you do that? It’s through contraception”…