A federal appeals court decided on Friday to block President Trump and his administration from taking advantage of new rules that would exempt an Obama-care requirement that they provide female employees coverage for birth control under their health care plans.
The 3rd United Circuit Court of Appeals sided with the decision of a lower court to block employers with moral or religious objections from becoming exempt from healthcare requirement laws of 2010.
The three-judge panel, seated in Philadelphia, agreed with attorney generals from the states of Pennsylvania and New Jersey in the opinion that rules set forth by the Health and Labor Departments are problematic.
The lawsuit was just one of a series of lawsuits filed by attorney generals across the country that challenge the ability to target an Affordable Care Act requirement. The Act is the signature accomplishment for former Democratic President Barack Obama.
The Obama Care mandate concerning contraceptive requires employers to provide an insurance plan that allows employees to receive birth control without a charge for co-payments.
Josh Shapiro, the attorney general of Pennsylvania, applauds the decision and says it will go along way to protect the contraceptive rights of women.
The Trump Administration has reported on its own that 126,400 women across the nation would lose their contraceptive care if the rule were enforced.
Justice Department Spokeswoman Kelly Laco says the decision is a disappointment to the department. Laco expressed the belief that religious individuals and organizations should not be forced to act against their own belief system.
In a report by Reuters, the Friday ruling upheld a January ruling by a Philadelphia federal judge. A similar ruling by a judge in California blocked enforcement of the rule in14 states across the nation and the District of Columbia.
Judge Patty Schwartz penned the judgment for the three-judge panel. Schwartz wrote the Trump Administration demonstrated no good reason to bypass public notice or the opportunity to provide commentary on the rules adopted by the Administration in 2017.
The Trump administration argued in past proceedings that the harm caused to employers who have religious objections to the Obama Care provision made it necessary to act urgently on the matter.
Judge Schwartz countered by saying the desire to lessen the harm done to employers is not cause to ignore ‘appropriate procedures.’ She characterized a decision by the government to adopt a final set of rules in 2018 that were not allowed by Obama Care as lacking ‘open-mindedness.