Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellUS could default within weeks absent action on debt limit: analysis The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Congress avoids shutdown Senate dodges initial December crisis with last-minute deal MORE (R-Ky.) said ObamaCare limited women’s healthcare choices not the Supreme Court.
“Thanks to ObamaCare, millions of women lost the health insurance plans they had and liked — causing enormous disruptions in their lives and in the lives of their families,” McConnell said on the Senate floor Wednesday. “As a result of ObamaCare, too many women now have fewer choices of doctors and hospitals.”
McConnell’s comments came ahead of a procedural Senate vote on legislation that would require companies to offer birth control coverage in staff health plans. The Democratic bill, S. 2578, is intended to undo the effects of the Supreme Court's June ruling in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby.
The Supreme Court ruled that some closely held private companies can not be required to offer birth control in their healthcare plans if they have religious objections, though the justices said they were open to an “accommodation” that could bypass those concerns.
While Republicans hailed the ruling as a victory for religious freedom, Democrats denounced it and are using the issue ahead of the November elections to fire up their base.
McConnell said Republicans agree that women should have the right to buy contraception, but that an employer shouldn’t have to participate in providing it if it contradicts their religious beliefs.
“Republicans continue to insist that we can and should be in the business of protecting everyone’s rights,” McConnell said. “We think that, instead of restricting Americans’ religious freedoms, Congress should instead work to preserve a woman’s ability to make contraceptive decisions for herself.”