Trump Rolls Back Birth Control Provision

By Free Radicalindex

On Friday, President Donald Trump’s administration rolled back an Obamacare policy that required companies to provide free birth control with no co-payment. Under the original Obamacare plan, religious institutions who opposed birth control could exempt themselves from the policy. Under Trump’s new provision, companies who have “religious beliefs” or “moral convictions” against offering birth control can now opt out of the program. This will greatly expand the number of employers who do not have to offer birth control.

Under the Obamacare regulation, more than 55 million women have access to free birth control.  In its first year, it saved Americans nearly $1.4 billion. Estimates are now that hundreds of thousands of women can now lose access according to The New York Times.

Critics have cried foul, stating that some companies may have dubious religious or moral convictions yet want to opt out of the program to save money. Moreover, they note that birth control helps saves lives and reduces poverty. It is contradictory for conservatives who oppose abortion to make it more difficult for women to acquire birth control. They have also noted that birth control is not only used to prevent pregnancies but also helps with medical conditions such as endometriosis and polycystic ovarian syndrome.

Yet the GOP has hailed the reform as a victory. House Speaker Paul Ryan called it a “landmark day for religious liberty” and proclaimed that employers now “can freely live out their religious convictions and moral beliefs.”

Nonetheless, the provision is likely to result in new litigation. The National Women’s Law Center, a nonprofit advocacy group, has begun developing measures for a lawsuit since last spring in anticipation of Trump’s reversal.  Trump has already been frustrated several times in his attempts to repeal Obamacare.His own policy initiatives such as immigration restrictions have also faced judicial roadblocks. Opponents hope they will have similar success with the current birth control rollback.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *