One woman slated to join president-elect Donald Trump's White House policy team thinks chemical birth control causes abortions and miscarriages. Oh, and Katy Talento will be working on the Domestic Policy Council focusing on healthcare policy because, really, that sort of absurdity is just par for the course with Trump's staffing picks.
Talking Points Memo reported on Talento's appointment and her lack of understanding of how birth control works despite apparently being "an infectious disease epidemiologist with nearly 20 years of experience in public health and health policy."
Talento's advocacy against birth control was first surfaced when she has hired as a legislative director for Sen. Thom Tillis (R-SC). In an article she published at The Federalist in January 2015, Talento preached about the risks of birth control, some of which are founded in facts, like the risk of cardiovascular problems. But she also made bogus claims, including that birth control pills may cause miscarriages.
"Preventing a fertilized egg (i.e. after conception) from hunkering down in the wall of the uterus, where it can grow normally," she wrote. "Progestin in birth control thins the endometrial lining (uterine wall), but a fertilized egg needs a thick, fluffy, blood-rich uterine wall to attach to and begin growth. Without it, the embryo can’t survive, and a miscarriage occurs."
There is no link between miscarriages and taking birth control pills before a pregnancy, according to The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology.
In The Federalist article, Talento also argues birth control limits a person's ability to have children in the future. She cites one study from 2012, but the overwhelming majority of research and experts have found birth control does not make it harder to get pregnant. The choice of Talento, who started working on the Trump campaign in July, does not foreshadow good things for access to birth control in the coming years. Unfortunately, Talento is far from Trump's most outrageous or frightening staffing choice.