President Donald Trump’s administration will rollback the Obamacare mandate that forces employers to cover employee birth control, and progressives are irate.
The administration announced on Friday that employers who cite religious or moral opposition to providing contraceptives will be exempt from the mandate, provided they tell their employees of the change, the New York Times reported.
Non profit and for profit faith-based organizations will be able to claim moral or religious objection and avoid providing the paperwork previously needed. Publicly traded companies must specifically identify a religious objection to qualify for the exemption.
“Application of the mandate to entities with sincerely held religious objections to it does not serve a compelling governmental interest,” the administration said, according to the Times.
“The government already engages in dozens of programs that subsidize contraception for the low-income women,” it said.
The decision was not welcomed by women’s rights activists.
“I think what the Trump administration is trying to do is effectively gut the rule without repealing it, because repealing it would be so unpopular,” Gretchen Borchelt, of the National Women’s Law Center, told the Huffington Post.
“If you truly want to reduce the need for abortion,” Planned Parenthood’s Dana Singiser said, “invest in women’s health and preventative care.”
Many took to social media to voice their anger over the rule.
The ACLU just announced that they plan to sue Trump's government over the new rules allowing employers to stop providing contraception to their employees for "religious or moral" reasons. More lawsuits likely to come.
— Ema O'Connor (@o_ema) October 6, 2017
And so it begins:
BREAKING: We're suing the Trump administration to block new rules allowing employers to deny insurance coverage for birth control. pic.twitter.com/nDT9QE0n8y
— ACLU (@ACLU) October 6, 2017
Denying women access to birth control is wrong and that’s exactly what the Trump Administration did today. https://t.co/38aeoeAfMM
— Senator Bob Casey (@SenBobCasey) October 6, 2017
Free birth control reduces abortions. Trump administration taking away free birth control. How does this make sense? https://t.co/9OsVG0ZFfO
— Barbara Boxer (@BarbaraBoxer) October 6, 2017
Now, many will have to pay full cost for contraception if employer, health plan, or school decides they don’t want to cover. #HandsOffMyBC
— Rep. Salud Carbajal (@RepCarbajal) October 6, 2017
The horror. Having to pay for something on your own.
— John Conyers, Jr. (@RepJohnConyers) October 6, 2017
Fake news. It isn’t banned. You simply have to pay for it yourself.
We live in a country where politicians try to make abortion rates go down by making it harder for women to get birth control.#handsoffmyBC
— John Fugelsang (@JohnFugelsang) October 6, 2017
Many on the right heralded the news as a victory for religious freedom.
Trump Administration upholds religious freedom. Again.
— Joe Walsh (@WalshFreedom) October 6, 2017
Great news! Trump admin just issued new rules protecting religious liberty objectors to HHS contraception mandate! https://t.co/DaYba4lawX
— Ryan T. Anderson (@RyanTAnd) October 6, 2017
Women are helpless and can’t pay for their own contraception and deserve to kill their 5 month old baby. Healthcare. https://t.co/TONHppfD1F
— Chad Felix Greene (@chadfelixg) October 6, 2017
Birth control is $9 per month at Walmart. https://t.co/v8wV0a7bMP
— Rep. Steven Smith (@RepStevenSmith) October 6, 2017
Is planned parenthood the only “cheap” source for birth control? Have you ever been to CVS?
— Brian Tuttle (@BrianTuttle12) October 6, 2017
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