Dana Watch: Lady Killer

Illustration by Bob Aul

An Oct. 3, 1990, Washington Post story quotes Representative Dana Rohrabacher (R-Putin’s Clutch Purse) saying he noticed something changed after he was first elected to Congress a couple of years before.

“A lot of women treat me differently,” said the then-single Surfin’ Congressman. “You’re a star. It’s like being a member of the football team in high school. You’re part of the varsity team.”

But when it comes to women’s issues that have been before Congress, Rohrabacher has not been a letterman. He voted four times to block the Paycheck Fairness Act and against the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, even though women in his district made 87.5 cents for every dollar a man there made.

Rohrabacher has also voted against: preventing insurance plans from charging women higher premiums than men; additional funding for programs addressing sexual assault, violence against women, and missing and exploited children; reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act; and empowering sexual-assault victims in the military to seek justice.

He has repeatedly voted to defund or attack Planned Parenthood. Some of these votes were double whammies when it came to poor women’s health, as they were part of bills that would also repeal the Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. Obamacare).

What follows are some specific, key votes Rohrabacher made over his 30 years in the House.

Nov. 7, 2007, vote on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which would prohibit job discrimination on the basis of an individual’s actual or perceived sexual orientation: Nay.

Feb. 28, 2013, vote on Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013: Nay.

Feb. 26, 2015, vote on an amendment to authorize the STEM Gateways program, which provided funding to support the success of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields: Nay.

April 20, 2015, vote on a resolution to block a Washington, D.C., law that protects against discrimination on the basis of reproductive decisions: Aye.

Sept. 29, 2015, vote on the Women’s Public Health and Safety Act, which allows states to refuse to make Medicaid payments to health-care providers that perform abortions: Aye.

Jan. 6, 2016, vote on the Restoring Americans’ Healthcare Freedom Reconciliation Act of 2015, which includes provisions prohibiting states from using federal funds to fund Planned Parenthood and other organizations that perform abortions except in cases of rape, incest or threat to the life of the pregnant woman: Aye.

One wonders if the head cheerleader dumped Rohrabacher soon after he said that varsity-football-player shit.

Got Dana fodder? Contact mcoker@ocweekly.com.

Matt Coker has been engaging, enraging and entertaining readers of newspapers, magazines and websites for decades. He spent the first 13 years of his career in journalism at daily newspapers before “graduating” to OC Weekly in 1995 as the paper’s first calendar editor. He went on to be managing editor, executive editor and is now senior staff writer.

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