A proposed law described as one protecting religious beliefs and moral convictions runs into critics who charge it’s dangerously vague and is more interested in this year’s elections than in protecting religions.
The bill would let employers refuse to provide health insurance coverage for sterilization, abortion, and contraception. He filed the bill in reaction to the Obama administration’s initiative a few weeks ago that Catholic hospitals complained would force them to provide coverage for those things for employees. The bill has been rushed to the floor for debate.
Senator Jolie Justus of Kansas City maintains the bill would talk about a lot more things if it really was about religious freedom. “There are a large group of people out there….who object to vaccines; they object to blood transfusions….And if we’re talking about true religious freedom, it should not be limited to reproductive health. But this isn’t about religious freedom. It’s about the national political debate as we head into the next presidential election,” she says
Other critics say the bill seems to allow employees to sue employers who don’t provide coverage those things under discrimination laws. Another suggests the lack of definition of “sterilization” could deny coverage for life-saving reproductive surgeries
Lamping has set the bill aside but could bring it back later.