Update: Santorum Supporter Who Suggested Women Put Aspirin Between Their Knees as Birth Control Apologizes, Sort Of (Plus, Santorum's Lame Response)

One of Santorum's funders, Foster Freiss, "gets such a chuckle" at the idea that women's access to contraception could possibly affect the election. According to Freiss, it is laughable for women to be concerned with their reproductive health when there is sooo much else happening in the world outside of their own bodies. 

He actually said this to Andrea Mitchell, in response to her question whether the birth control saga will effect Santorum's shot at the Presidency:

Well, I get such a chuckle when these things come up. Here we have millions of our fellow Americans unemployed, we have jihadists camps being set up in Latin America which Rick has been warning about, and people seem to be so preoccupied with sexthat I think it says something about our culture. We maybe need a massive therapy session so we can concentrate on what the real issues are. This contraception thing. My gosh, it's so  inexpensive.  In my day, they used Bayer aspirin for contraceptions. The gals put it between their knees and it wasn’t that costly.”

Preoccupied with sex? A therapy session? Aspirin between the knees? WHAT? 

Did Freiss just say that people should not have sex when there are "jihadists camps being set up in Latin America," or did he mean they should not worry about the pregnancy that will result from sex without contraception, when there are "jihadist camps being set up in Latin America"? Either way, "my gosh," contraception can be pretty expensive. And while using Bayer aspirin as birth control may not be "that costly," it's NOT contraception. It's Aspirin. Or abstinence. And to even suggest that women revert to abstinence for contraception because it's cheaper is so offensive even Santorum had to kind of respond. 

Santorum responded to Mitchell's assertion that women's health is a non-issue and avoiding pregnancy is not important, by telling Buzzfeed this: "I'm not responsible for every bad joke one of my supporters makes."

Ohh, so Freiss was joking when he belittled he importance of women's health. Not laughing.

UPDATE!Freiss apologized on his blog -- and thanked those who found it funny. After saying that people who remembered the old joke that Aspirin would one day be birth control laughed at his idiocy, (they must not have been the people who got pregnant using the joke as birth control), he says:

After listening to the segment tonight, I can understand how I confused people with the way I worded the joke and their taking offense is very understandable. To all those who took my joke as modern day approach I deeply apologize and seek your forgiveness. My wife constantly tells me I need new material—she understood the joke but didn’t like it anyway—so I will keep that old one in the past where it belongs.

I am a big fan of the ancient Jewish scripture which says “God works everything for good for those that love Him and are called to His purpose.” So maybe the good to come from the high profile reaction is a better understanding of Rick Santorum. He publicly stated he would not ban contraception; he has said if he were a member of a state legislature which introduced such a bill, he would vote against it; and he has incurred the wrath of his more conservative friends for voting to fund contraception to fight AIDS in Africa.

Then he gets into this pro-Santorum, no-really-I-swear-women-love-him stuff. He finishes off the post with a shout-out to his supporters:

To those who applauded my comments and remembered the joke, thanks for your encouragement. To those who thought I was callously encouraging that as a prescription for today, I kindly ask your forgiveness. God Bless, Foster****


AlterNet / By Kristen Gwynne

Posted at February 17, 2012, 3:57am

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