Federal judge blocks Trump administration birth control rules
GabiSanda / Pixabay
Federal judge blocks Trump administration birth control rules

A judge for the US District Court for the Northern District of California granted an injunction in the jurisdictions that challenged new rules that would have made it easier for an employer to opt-out of providing health insurance that cover female birth control.

The rules were scheduled to go into effect Monday. The injunction is only imposed in jurisdictions that joined the lawsuit, which include 13 states and the District of Columbia.

Supporters of the President’s new rules claim that requiring employers to fund health coverage for services they may have religious objections to violates their Constitutional rights under the First Amendment.

In his ruling, Judge Haywood Gilliam, Jr. concluded:

On balance, because the Court has concluded that Plaintiffs are likely to show that the Final Rules are not mandated by [the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993], and that the existing accommodation does not substantially burden religious exercise, it finds that maintaining the status quo for the time being, pending a prompt resolution of the merits of Plaintiffs’ claims, is warranted based on the record presented. Plaintiffs have shown that the balance of equities tips sharply in their favor, and that the public interest favors granting a preliminary injunction.

In a press release issued after the ruling, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra stated that “The law couldn’t be clearer—employers have no business interfering in women’s healthcare decisions.”