Judge Blocks President Trump’s Birth Control Coverage Rules in 13 States
Employers won't be able opt out of granting women with no-cost birth control
U.S. judge has blocked the Trump administration rules which allow more employers to opt out of granting women with no-cost birth control in California on Sunday.
The rules will be blocked from taking effect in 13 states and Washington, D.C.
Judge Haywood Gilliam allowed a request for a preliminary injunction by California, including Washington, D.C. and 12 other states.
The plaintiffs endeavored to block the rules from taking effect on Monday.
A lawsuit against the rules will now be filed.
But Gilliam restricted the scope of the ruling to the plaintiffs, denying their request that he block the rules for all states.
The changes would have given employers to opt out of providing no-cost contraceptive coverage to female employees by claiming objections on religious grounds.
Some private employers could object to low-cost contraception on moral grounds.
According to ABCNews: California and the other states argue that women would be required to turn to state-funded programs for birth control and unintended experience pregnancies.
"The law couldn't be more clear — employers have no business interfering in women's healthcare decisions," California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said in a statement Sunday.
"Today's court ruling stops another attempt by the Trump Administration to trample on women's access to basic reproductive care.
"It's 2019, yet the Trump Administration is still trying to roll back women's rights. Our coalition will continue to fight to ensure women have access to the reproductive healthcare they are guaranteed under the law."
The U.S. Department of Justice said in court documents the rules "protect a narrow class of sincere religious and moral objectors from being forced to facilitate practices that conflict with their beliefs."
At issue is a requirement under President Barack Obama's health care law that birth control services be included at no additional cost.
Obama officials included exemptions for religious organizations.
The Trump administration increased those exemptions and added "moral convictions" as a basis to opt out of providing birth control services.
At a hearing on Friday, Gilliam said the changes would result in a "substantial number" of women losing birth control coverage, which would be a "massive policy shift."
The judge previously blocked an interim version of the rules — a ruling that was upheld in December by an appeals court.
The ruling affects California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Minnesota, New York, North Carolina, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and the District of Columbia.
Last year, Trump announced he was committed to the protection of rights for unborn babies in all 50 state as he prepares to use the nomination of a new Supreme Court Justice to make the ban nationwide.
Donald Trump wrote a letter addressing pro-life advocates, making it clear that he believes the lives of unborn children still have "the right to life."
“We all must defend the most fundamental human right — the right to life. As President I am dedicated to protecting the lives of every American including the unborn,” Trump wrote.