Santorum's billionaire donor's birth control comment draws fire

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By Alysha Bohanon

A major supporter of GOP presidential hopeful Rick Santorum's campaign made a remark about contraception Tuesday that has many women's advocacy groups firing back, news sources report.

Santorum's billionaire donor Foster Friess, a retired mutual fund executive from Wyoming, he suggested that in his days, birth control was less expensive because women just squeezed an aspirin between their knees to prevent them from having sex, the Los Angeles Times reported.

"You know, back in my days, they'd use Bayer aspirin for contraceptives. The gals put it between their knees and it wasn't that costly," Friess said in an interview with NBC, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards called his comment "insulting and irresponsible," according to CNN. "Birth control is basic health care and used almost universally by women," Richards said. "It is not something to belittle on national TV."

The National Organization for Women President Terry O'Neill called on Friess to "immediately apologize" to women, CNN reported. "Mr. Freiss' comments today on MSNBC that women use aspirin between their knees for contraception were not only offensive, but demeaning and disrespectful to women," O'Neill said in a statement to CNN. "Santorum should also use this time to renounce his anti-birth control stance."

Friess gave $330,000 to a Santorum super PAC last year, which made up half of the super PAC's total proceeds. Friess has said he contributed at least $250,000 more in the last month, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Santorum told reporters Thursday night that Friess was a "well-known jokester" and said he was not responsible for claims made by his supporters, according to CNN.

"Obviously I don't agree with the basic premise," he said, according to CNN. "It was a joke. It was a stupid joke. It was bad taste."

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This page contains a single entry by boha0054 published on February 17, 2012 12:56 AM.

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