Social conservatives are targeting the underlying framework of Eisenstadt v. Baird (1972). One of the less well known birth-control Supreme Court cases, Eisenstadt established that unmarried women and men have a right to use birth control. Jonathan Moreno and Francis Killing have a good analysis over at The Nation:
In Liberty and Sexuality, [historian David] Garrow quotes extensively from conservative commentators who claim that Eisenstadt was intended to legitimize sexual liberty and to extend separate the privacy right from marriage and family. Privacy, up to then, was essentially a patriarchal concept with the family as the property of the husband. Limbaugh expresses the same sentiment in cruder ways. Sexually active women who are freed from the fear of pregnancy are “sluts.” Had Sandra Fluke, the 30-year-old single Georgetown Law student, been married, would Limbaugh have ranted that she wanted us to “pay for her to have sex?” We doubt it.
(Just days later Limbaugh wondered about Tracie McMillan who had just won a literary prize: “What is it with all these young single white women? Overeducated doesn’t mean intelligent.”)
Indeed, the opposition to the Affordable Care Act’s no-cost birth control mandate is not actually about contraception or religious freedom but about sexual liberty. Garrow notes that several of the clerks for the Eisenstadt justices suspected sexual freedom was as much a part of the thinking of the justices as was the shadowy penumbra of privacy rights that were explicitly cited. It is about those whose consensual sexual unions are not legitimized by a state or sanctified by a faith. Today more women are simple eschewing marriage or postponing it, as well as postponing childbearing, than ever before, yet a simmering unease about unmarried sex remains.
h/t Sarah Posner