In the name of religious liberty, MO lawmakers challenge birth control mandate in federal health insurance reform
On September 12, 2012 At 9:41 pm
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Should Missouri lawmakers get their way, insurers and employers that provide health insurance in the state will not need to pay for contraceptives, sterilization or abortions based on "moral and religious grounds."
The legislation overrides Gov. Jay Nixon's previous veto and is intended to challenge to the federal contraception mandate under the Affordable Care Act and to "protect religious liberties."
"To be forced to do something that is against what scripture says, I believe, is wrong," a man told news channel KMBC. Others don't see it that way. The Greater Kansas City Coalition of Labor Union Women announced that it will seek an injunction against the Missouri law, saying it conflicts with the new federal health care reform law.
Phoenix' Fox 10 News reports that the 2/3 majority for an override was won narrowly. "The Missouri measure was championed by the Missouri Catholic Conference, Missouri Right to Life and other religious and anti-abortion groups," the station goes on to report.
Missouri Right to Life issued a press release, lauding the "pro life values" of the legislators who voted to override the governor's veto. Pam Fichter, President of Missouri Right to Life, wrote:
Today, during the constitutionally required veto session, the required two-thirds majority of the Missouri House and well over two-thirds of the Senate voted to override Governor Jay Nixon’s veto of SB 749. With bi-partisan support in both chambers, the Senate vote was 26 to 6 and the House vote was 109 to 45.
SB 749 simply seeks to protect people and institutions of faith from being forced to provide insurance coverage for abortion or abortion causing drugs against their deeply held religious beliefs. It also places in statute the right to have Missouri’s Attorney General sue to protect Missouri’s religious institutions and business owners if the federal government mandates participation in the destruction of innocent human lives by way of forcing coverage of abortion causing drugs.
We thank the Missouri legislators who voted to override the veto and take a stand for the protection of our religious liberties and for the innocent human lives that are at risk due to the Obama Health Care bill and the HHS mandate.
Please check our website at missourilife.org to see how your legislators voted on the veto override of SB 749. If he/she voted to override, please call and thank your Senator and Representative. If he/she did not vote to override, please go to the polls on November 6 and vote for a new Representative or Senator that will support your pro-life values!
This decision about contraceptives conflicts with other faith groups' views. Back in 2009, Rev. Rebecca Turner and other faith activists began a campaign where they urged Missouri legislators opposed to abortion to support prevention in the form of sex education and widespread use of birth control. "It is our moral responsibility to put prevention first," Rev. Turner said in a video about The Prevention First bill: