Are you surprised that Trump decided to drop the requirement that employers cover birth control in their health insurance plans? Angry? Frustrated?
I can bet that John Adams, GOP candidate for Virginia Attorney General, isn’t any of those things. That’s because he paved the way for today’s decision.
Access to Affordable Birth Control is Essential to How and When Women Choose to Start Their Families
Birth control can be expensive and is essential to how and when they start their families. An employer’s decision on whether or not to cover birth control puts your boss in charge of how and when you start a family. And that’s okay with John Adams because, if you’re a woman, he doesn’t WANT you to have or use birth control.
In 2010, a provision of the Affordable Care Act went into effect, mandating that employers cover birth control (for free!) in their employee health insurance plans. Then in 2014, a company called Hobby Lobby sued, claiming religious opposition to the requirement to cover birth control for employees.
Here’s where John Adams comes in.
As an outspoken opponent of women’s reproductive rights, John Adams thinks Roe v. Wade is on questionable legal footing. So it wasn’t a stretch to see him play a critical part in ensuring that Hobby Lobby had its day in court. And thanks in part to him, they did .
The case was eventually heard by the Supreme Court — and John Adams filed an amicus brief pro bono in support of Hobby Lobby:
“The Obama administration ignored the Religious Freedom Restoration Act when it crafted the Affordable Care Act’s provision requiring employer medical plans to include contraceptive coverage,” said “11 Republican lawmakers” who were represented in the Hobby Lobby case “by Andrew W. Lester and Carrie Vaughn of Lester Loving & Davies PC, John D. Adams and Matthew A. Fitzgerald of McGuireWoods LLP, Kevin C. Walsh of the University of Richmond’s T.C. Williams School of Law, and Brendan M. Walsh of Pashman Stein.” [Law360]
Hobby Lobby—and John Adam’s—Win Laid the Groundwork for Trump’s Decision
Hobby Lobby won—allowing employers to withhold birth control coverage from their employee health plans on religious grounds. But to do so, they had to at least file—and be accepted for—religious exemption status. Not any more.
Now the Trump administration has decided to let employers deny birth control coverage to women for ANY reason.
Studies show that women saved $1.4 billion dollars PER YEAR due to the requirement that employer health plans cover birth control.
The fact is that the Hobby Lobby case laid the groundwork for Trump’s decision. Studies show that women saved $1.4 billion dollars PER YEAR due to the birth control mandate. That alone gives women and families EVERY reason to be outraged at this latest attack on women and their families, particularly those who are low-income.
Vote on November 7
So you can thank Trump for this, but don’t forget about John Adams. Especially when you vote on November 7. Because if John Adams is elected as your Attorney General, you can expect more attacks on women’s health.
Photo credit: Bryancalabro (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons