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Thursday, April 11, 2013

Mo. Attorney General to Republicans: Enough "Foolishness" on Contraception Coverage

Posted By on Thu, Apr 11, 2013 at 2:44 PM

Chris Koster serves the GOP a bitter pill.
  • Chris Koster serves the GOP a bitter pill.

In a scathing rebuke of conservative lawmakers, Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster today called on Republicans to end their continued bickering over contraception coverage outlined in the federal Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. Obamacare.

"The Republicans' attempt to deny contraceptive coverage to women in Missouri is just plain foolishness," said Koster in a statement issued this afternoon. "The Republican effort to deny contraceptive coverage cannot be supported by case law or sound public policy."

Koster's admonishment comes days after he acknowledged that he will run for governor in 2016 and as Republican leaders continue to demand that he appeal a federal court ruling last month that struck down a Missouri law found to be in violation of the Affordable Care Act.

See also: - House Speaker Tim Jones Still Fighting Birth Control Mandate After Ruling - GOP Pressure Chris Koster to Appeal Contraception Decision - Catholic Bishops of Missouri Slam Birth Control Ruling

Last year Republican legislators overrode a veto from Governor Jay Nixon to push through a law (SB 749) that allowed businesses to deny contraception coverage to employees if the owner of the company objected to birth control on moral, ethical or religious grounds.

But under Obamacare, only religious organizations have a right to deny contraception coverage. In her ruling last month U.S. District Judge Audrey Fleissig rejected the premise that Missouri's law opening up exemptions for more than just religious organizations did not violate the federal law.

Today Koster said he would ask the federal court to clarify its ruling so that federal exemptions applicable to religious employers, such as the Archdiocese of St. Louis, remain in effect. However, Koster also stated that he would not appeal the crux of the court's decision that found that other employers in Missouri must provide contraceptive coverage as part of their employer-provided healthcare plans.

Continue on to view Koster's motion to the court.

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