Saturday, July 14, 2012

GOP pressing on with contraception lawsuit

LINCOLN, Neb. — Seven states trying to block part of the federal health care law that requires contraception coverage will continue with their lawsuit despite last month's U.S. Supreme Court ruling that upheld most of the law, according to Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning, who is leading the case.

The federal lawsuit is challenging a rule that requires contraception coverage in health care plans — including for employees of church-affiliated hospitals, schools and outreach programs. The suit argues that the rule violates the rights of employers that object to the use of contraceptives, sterilization and abortion-inducing drugs.

The U.S. Department of Justice wants the suit dismissed, in part because the president is trying to work out a compromise, but Bruning and his fellow Republican attorneys general in Florida, Michigan, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Texas aren't backing down.

"This rule is a brazen violation of the First Amendment rights of millions of Americans," Bruning spokeswoman Shannon Kingery said. "We will continue to fight this attack on religious liberty."

Some legal experts said that even though the nation's highest court largely upheld the law, the lawsuit is narrowing in on a separate issue and has a decent chance.

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