published on December 21, 2017 - 12:40 PM
Written by Associated Press

(AP) — A second federal judge has blocked Trump administration rules allowing more employers to opt out of providing women with no-cost birth control.

U.S. District Judge Haywood Gilliam in Oakland, California, ruled Thursday that the administration had failed to provide advanced notice and to allow public comment on the rule change before implementing it.

Gilliam granted a preliminary injunction sought by the state of California.

The rules had already been blocked nationwide by a federal judge in Philadelphia in a separate lawsuit brought by the state of Pennsylvania.

President Barack Obama’s health care law required most companies to cover birth control at no additional cost, though it included exemptions for religious organizations. The new policy would allow more categories of employers, including publicly traded companies, to opt out of providing free contraception to women by claiming religious objections.

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