Udall Backs Contraception Coverage Bill Blocked By Senate GOP

July 16, 2014 7:55 PM

Udall Backs Contraception Coverage Bill Blocked By Senate GOP
" WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Republicans on Wednesday blocked a bill aimed at restoring free contraception for women who get their health insurance from companies with religious objections, a legislative setback for Democrats that they hope will be a political winner in November’s elections.

The vote was 56-43 to move ahead on the measure, short of the 60 votes necessary to proceed.

Democrats sponsored the election-year bill to reverse last month’s Supreme Court ruling that closely held businesses with religious objections could deny coverage under President Barack Obama’s health care law.

Republicans called the bill a political stunt aimed at helping vulnerable Democratic incumbents in the elections.

Indeed, Democrats have seized on the birth control issue as they look ahead to November with hopes of energizing voters, especially women, to preserve the party’s Senate majority. Democrats must defend more seats, and Republicans are upbeat about their prospects of gaining the six necessary to secure control, especially in GOP-leaning Southern states.

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., who is in a competitive re-election contest, summed up her party’s argument on the issue "

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