Judge Removes Exemption for Objectors From Mandatory Birth-Control

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A federal judge has struck down a Missouri law exempting moral objectors from mandatory birth control coverage because it conflicts with an insurance requirement under President Barrack Obama’s health care law.

The pro-life group Campaign Life Missouri sent an email Monday denouncing the ruling as “a radical departure from America’s tradition of religious freedom” and encouraged people to contact Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster’s office in support of an appeal.

Some backers of Missouri’s law said the court ruling would result in churches and other religious organizations having to purchase insurance policies that include contraception coverage even if it violated their beliefs as is the case with Catholic churches and others.

The overturned law had required insurers to issue policies without contraception coverage if individuals or employers assert that the use of birth control violates their “moral, ethical or religious beliefs.” The state’s Republican-led Legislature overrode the veto of Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon last September to enact the law, which appeared to be the first in the nation to directly rebut the Obama administration’s contraception policy.