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Thu March 1, 2012
New Hampshire Senators Split On Blunt Amendment
Thursday New Hampshire’s senators voted along party lines as the Senate rejected an amendment to unwind a controversial new contraceptive rule from the Obama Administration.
Instead of requiring religious institutions to provide birth control in their health care plans, the White House pivoted and is now forcing insurance companies to provide contraception free of charge. Missouri Senator Roy Blunt’s amendment would have allowed employers to decide their own coverage based upon their religious beliefs. Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte supported the amendment.
“We’re not breaking any new ground here. In fact we are respecting what is contained within our First Amendment to the Constitution and what has long been a bipartisan effort to respect the conscience rights of all Americans, whatever their religious views are,” says Ayotte.
But Democratic Senator Jeanne Shaheen says Republicans are just trying to score political points. As governor she says she helped usher through a similar requirement on insurance companies in the Granite State.
“There was no outcry from the religious community at the time. The law has been working very well in New Hampshire for the last 12 years,” says Shaheen/
Even though the Senate rejected the legislation, the issue isn’t expected to go away as this year’s elections heat up.