Merkley Statement on Failure of Anti-Contraception Amendment

WASHINGTON – Today, Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley released the following statement after the Senate voted to reject an amendment that would have allowed employers to deny their workers contraception or other vital health care services on the basis of an employer’s “conviction:”

“Today, the U.S. Senate drew a line in the sand and said enough is enough – these repeated attacks on women’s health have gone too far. This amendment would have allowed CEOs to impose their personal beliefs onto all of their employees. That is just wrong. The amendment was initially conceived to target employees’ access to contraception – unacceptable in any measure – but this extreme effort went so far that it would have allowed employers and CEOs to deny maternity care, blood transfusions, HIV/AIDs treatment, and in fact any health care service the CEO claimed violated his or her personal ‘conviction.’ This would have thrown into jeopardy essential health coverage for thousands of Oregonians, men and women alike. I am pleased to see this amendment rejected.”