Planned Parenthood pans Laurel lawmaker's comments

Accuses Kerns of linking student to animal
2012-03-26T18:45:00Z 2014-08-25T23:53:21Z Planned Parenthood pans Laurel lawmaker's commentsBy CHARLES S. JOHNSON Gazette State Bureau The Billings Gazette

HELENA -- Planned Parenthood of Montana has denounced as "degrading, sexist and inexcusable" comments made by state Rep. Krayton Kerns, R-Laurel, about contraception.

Kerns is a veterinarian who writes a regular article on his personal website called, "Weekly Posting of the Conservative Cow Doctor."

In his article, "Sandra Fluke: Poster Child of a Progressive America," Kerns discussed the Georgetown University law student, who raised the cost of contraception at a hearing held by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.

Kerns later talked about how when he was at veterinary school at Colorado State University, a bulldog made $1,000 a month for stud services.

Planned Parenthood spokeswoman Stacey Anderson accused Kerns of linking an American college student to an animal, while the legislator denied that he had done that. 

Here's what Kerns wrote about Fluke:

"Before a mock congressional hearing she testified $1,000 per year for contraception is cost-prohibitive for students, and this expense should be borne by people who actually have jobs. (This makes sense for her because she is still in college.)

"When I finished banging my head on the table, I pulled out my imaginary photo albums and reminisced about free-love college days of the '70s and '80s. Things were different. I remember John earning $1,000 per month for sex at Colorado State University, so contraceptive costs were meaningless to him. Let me tell you about John.

"John was a swinger, but not your typical sex symbol. He was hairy, had short legs, fat belly and he slobbered a lot, but the vet school rumor mill said he was earning nearly $300 per week practicing his trade. John's registered name was John-Boy, and he was a grand champion English bulldog owned by a pharmacology instructor at Colorado State....

"Enough said about the good old days, and this brings me my point: How in the world did the political debate descend to the level of contraception for coeds."

Kerns added if the government picks up the responsibility for contraception, "does logic not dictate they will also have the right to say who receives it and what type? When America crosses this threshold, it is not much of a stretch to say health-care bureaucrats will eventually decide who lives and who dies."

Anderson, in response, accused Kerns of "taking a page out of (radio host Rush) Limbaugh's playbook and has gone one step further by associating an American college student with an animal.

"Rep. Kerns' comments are degrading, sexist and inexcusable for an elected leader of this state," Anderson said. "In Montana, we respect the right to publicly debate an issue, but we draw the line at debasing or insulting an individual with whom we disagree.

"Comments like these only confirm that today's conservative politicians are out of touch with Montana values and priorities. When Montana voters go to the polls in 2012, they will support candidates who are working to get our economy back on the track, not continuing to attack women and their families about private medical decisions regarding health care."

In an interview, Kerns said he makes no comparison between Fluke and the bulldog and said that should be "explicitly clear" to anyone who read the entire article.

Kerns said the point of his article was "the idea that this election has been degraded into contraception and who should pay for it is absolutely insane."   

 

Kerns is seeking re-election in House District 58. He will face Democrat Cole Olson in the general election. Kerns was elected to the Legislature in 2007.

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