Dems claim victory in birth-control fight despite Obama shift


An accompanying YouTube video, which includes excerpts from Obama's Friday press conference announcing the change, aims to highlight the sharp distinction between the president's compromise and a proposal – being drafted by Republicans – to repeal the birth-control mandate for employers. 

"Who do you think should make decisions about contraception?" the ad asks. "You, or your employer?" 

The Democrats are hoping not only to rally favor from liberals who are widely supportive of protecting women's access to contraception, but also to allay any fears that Catholic Democrats might have about Obama's new policy. 

Although studies indicate that contraception use among Catholic women is nearly universal, the pill, condoms and other forms of birth control are forbidden under Catholic doctrine – a policy reinforced Friday when the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops issued a statement condemning Obama's compromise plan.

"All the other mandated 'preventive services' prevent disease, and pregnancy is not a disease," the bishops said.

Meanwhile, House GOP leaders are crafting legislation to overturn Obama's mandate. Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.), chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee, said Wednesday that the panel will vote “in the coming weeks” to repeal the new requirement.