White House to Budge on Birth-Control Mandate

'Accommodation' for religious employers will likely be announced today
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 10, 2012 9:18 AM CST
A woman holds prescription contraceptives June 13, 2001 in Seattle, Washington.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – The White House yesterday signaled a compromise over its contentious birth control decision, and the Wall Street Journal confirms that an attempt to accommodate the Catholic Church will likely be announced today. Details remain hazy, but one source tells the Journal that insurance companies, not religious employers, will become the ones who pay for contraception coverage. ABC News notes the move would be cheaper for health insurance companies than having to cover unwanted pregnancies and complications. But since the "accommodation" will still allow female employees access to birth control, Jake Tapper notes, it will likely not satisfy religious leaders.

Meanwhile, the furor grows: Chicago Cardinal Francis George wrote a letter harshly denouncing the "unjust law," which will be read in Chicago services this weekend, the Sun-Times reports. And MSNBC reports that the Catholic Eternal Word Television Network sued yesterday to block the mandate, which would require it—as a religious employer—to cover contraceptive services. Two senators have also introduced legislation challenging the rule in Congress. (Read more birth control stories.)

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