New Hampshire Republican Gov. Chris Sununu has signed into law a bill that requires health insurers to offer free birth control for a period of 12 months.
Planned Parenthood celebrated Sununu’s action on Twitter:
BREAKING: #SB421 is now law! Granite Staters now have access to a 12-month #birthcontrol supply without a co-pay. Thanks to all who helped pass this critical #reprohealth legislation! #Fight4ACCESS #WeAreUnstoppable #nhpolitics pic.twitter.com/ohFPMJGmBL
— Planned Parenthood (@PPNHAF) July 5, 2018
“As the Trump-Pence administration continues to undermine health care and rights at every turn, it’s more important than ever that we fight forward to advance policies that not only protect, but also expand access to health care,” said Dawn Laguens, executive vice president for Planned Parenthood Federation of America, according to the Washington Examiner.
The law passed the state legislature by a wide margin. It requires insurers to provide a 12-month supply of birth control with no copays and prohibits them from interfering in the dispensing of the 12-month supply because a physician prescribed it.
In October 2017, the Trump administration ended the controversial Obama-era contraceptive mandate that required employers to provide free contraception and abortion-inducing drugs to workers through health insurance plans. Employers with religious or moral objections to providing birth control were exempted from providing contraceptives. A federal judge blocked the new rule, however, in December 2017.
Planned Parenthood – which benefits financially from wider distribution of contraceptives – NARAL, and other feminist groups have attempted to portray Trump as intent on taking away women’s birth control by reversing the mandate. The Obama administration itself, however, actually exempted at least 25 million Americans, through various exemption allowances, from its own rule.
In June, Sununu signed into law legislation lobbied for by transgender activists. One measure – a “bathroom bill” – allows biological males posing as women to use women’s public bathrooms, and another requires therapists to immediately affirm a child’s belief his or her gender does not match biological sex.
“Recently, Gov. Sununu said, ‘let us be the example’ to the nation regarding this legislation,” wrote family organization Cornerstone Action about New Hampshire’s new embrace of gender ideology. “This is not the example New Hampshire residents elected him to give. Forcing a fringe special-interest group’s view of human sexuality on every New Hampshire resident and punishing those who disagree is not freedom. It is tyranny.”
In November 2017, Massachusetts Republican Gov. Charlie Baker also signed into law a bill that, save for churches, forces employers in the state – regardless of their religious or moral convictions – to provide free birth control to workers.
In August 2016, Illinois GOP Gov. Bruce Rauner signed into law measures that extended health insurance coverage for nearly all contraceptives and that required physicians with religious and moral convictions against abortion to refer women seeking abortions to providers who will perform them.