Obama praises Supreme Court ruling on contraception mandate

Obama praises Supreme Court ruling on contraception mandate
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President Obama on Monday said he’s pleased that a Supreme Court ruling on his healthcare law means women will still be allowed access to contraception. 

“The practical effect is right now, that women will still continue to be able to get contraception if they are getting health insurance,” he said during an interview with BuzzFeed. 

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It’s Obama’s first public reaction to the Supreme Court’s decision in the high-profile case Zubik v. Burwell. 

Earlier Monday, the justices directed the Obama administration to try again to reach a compromise with religious groups suing over the Affordable Care Act’s birth control mandate. 

The justices declined to rule on the central legal question, whether the mandate “substantially burdened” religious organizations such as the Little Sisters of the Poor.

Even though the court ordered the administration to tweak the mandate to assuage concerns of religious groups, Obama said it is already “properly accommodating religious institutions who have objections to contraception.”

The president also used the interview to press the Senate to confirm his stalled Supreme Court nominee, Merrick Garland.

He cited a series of 4-4 decisions that have left high-profile cases on issues such as the death penalty and bank loans unresolved. 

Even though the justices ruled unanimously in the Zubik case, Obama said, “My suspicion is if we had nine Supreme Court justices instead of eight, there might have been a different outcome.”