Trump administration rolls back Obama’s birth control mandate


Employers whose religious beliefs or morals prevented them from providing contraception in good conscience were forced to do so anyway, under a rule in the Obama administration.

Now, the Trump administration has announced Friday that it will exempt such employers from the rule.

The Department of Health and Human Services was given the discretion to issue rules about what women’s preventive care should include. Under each administration, rules can be reversed or changed.

Under the Obama administration, there was a rule which made it a mandate for employers to cover all forms of contraception, from birth control pills to emergency contraception, without a co-pay.

Houses of worship were exempt from the obligation; however, businesses owned by those with strongly-held beliefs that providing birth control or the “morning after” pill would be morally objectionable were not.

A rule approved Friday by the Trump administration, which takes effect immediately, allows any employer, including churches, colleges, universities and health insurance companies to stop complying with the birth control coverage mandate if they choose.

Businesses who previously found the requirement objectionable were mainly concerned about paying for access to emergency contraception and intrauterine devices, or IUDs. Some IUDs may prevent a fertilized egg from developing by slowing down the growth of the uterine lining, making it inhospitable for the eggs. Some liken this to an abortion.

Critics said the mandate was an assault on religious liberty. In one case in which the question was taken to the Supreme Court, Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, the court decided that the rule as written violated the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993.

As a result, the Obama administration was told to define the rule more clearly, a task now being undertaken by the Trump administration.

According to documents leaked back in May, the administration found that “the government’s interest in ensuring employees of religious nonprofits receive birth control is less significant than previously stated.”

The Left is already outraged over the decision, and Planned Parenthood declared that “access to birth control has been *essential* to women’s progress.”



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