Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Huckabee: For contraception mandate before he opposed it

Posted By on Wed, Feb 15, 2012 at 7:50 PM

Interesting LA Times story:

Mike "We Are All Catholics Today" Huckabee, when he was Arkansas governor, apparently signed a health insurance mandate law in 2005 that included contraception in preventive care. He was among many Republicans in many states who did the same.

Oops. In Arkansas, that law had two Republican co-sponsors. More checking will be required. But I hope Sen. Missy Irvin and the ALEC squad is on the lookout for these apostates.

The background, as I've mentioned here before, is that the federal EEOC said in 2000 that all employers with more than 15 workers must cover contraceptives for women if they offer health plans that cover preventive services and prescription drugs. Many states, including Arkansas, passed mandates into law. Republicans supported the legislation, in states such as Iowa, Arizona and, in 2001, New York, where George Pataki signed the legislation.

Four years later, the Arkansas law easily cleared that state's Legislature, with help from Republican lawmakers, including two GOP cosponsors. Huckabee signed it in April 2005.

He defended the law in a statement. "Religious employers are not required to comply with this policy," he said. "My position is, and always has been, that religious entities shouldn't be forced to pay for contraception."

But like the original federal regulation proposed by Obama, the Arkansas law did not exempt church-affiliated hospitals and universities. It exempts only "religious employers" that are nonprofit organizations whose primary mission is "the inculcation of religious values," and primarily employ people who share the same religion, a standard few Catholic hospitals meet.

The new Obama regulation makes no requirements of even religious affiliates. It requires health insurance companies to pay for preventive care.

PS — We inquired of a St. Vincent Infirmary spokesman recently whether their health coverage provided for contraception. She said it did not. Sounds like we need to re-check.

UPDATE: Thanks to a Huckabee supporter for providing a link to the Arkansas law in question. It's the Equity in Prescription Insurance and Contraceptive Coverage Act. If plans provide prescription coverage, they must cover birth control.

Here's the religious exemption language, verbatim, from Arkansas law:

"Religious employer" means an entity:

(A) That is organized and operated for religious purposes and has received a § 501(c)(3) designation from the Internal Revenue Service;

(B) That has as one (1) of its primary purposes the inculcation of religious values; and

(C) That employs primarily persons who share its religious tenets

And here's the crux of the coverage requirement:

Every health benefit policy that is delivered, issued, executed, or renewed in this state or approved for issuance or renewal in this state by the Insurance Commissioner on or after the effective date of this subchapter that provides coverage for prescription drugs on an outpatient basis shall provide coverage for prescribed drugs or devices approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration for use as a contraceptive.

"Abortifacients" are exempted, but, still a good law and kudos for Huckabee's signature. It would appear to go even farther than the Huckabee Obama compromise in mandating coverage under health policies issued by institutions with religious affiliations if they don't exist primarily for that purpose and don't primarily employ people of that religion.

Tags: , , ,

Favorite

Speaking of...

Comments (30)

Showing 1-30 of 30

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-30 of 30

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • The assault on Obamacare begins

    Donald Trump Friday night signed an executive order directing government to scale back Obamacare to the extent possible. Though the signing was mostly symbolic, it likely has implications for Arkansas.
    • Jan 21, 2017
  • Two dead in North Little Rock shooting

    two people were fatally wounded about 9 p.m. Friday in a home in the 1400 block of Division Street, North Little Rock.
    • Jan 21, 2017
  • 2nd Amendment meets the 1st in Fayetteville on campus carry

    They've had a forum in Fayetteville today on Rep. Charlie Collins' fervent desire to force more pistol-packing people onto the campus at the University of Arkansas (and every other college in Arkansas.) He got an earful from opponents.
    • Jan 20, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

Most Shared

  • Sarah Huckabee Sanders to be deputy White House press secretary

    Donald Trump announced additional White House staff today, notably including Sarah Huckabee Sanders, deputy assistant to the president and principal deputy press secretary.
  • Legislation filed for $10 million school voucher program

    The legislation to vastly expand transfer of state tax dollars to private schools came before the school choice day event I mentioned earlier.
  • Facing closure, Wilson Elementary families deliver angry message to school leaders

    "Why do you guys not care about your community? You’re tearing it down, not building it up, especially in the black community … It’s just a simple question — do you care?" one mother asked the superintendent. "Ma’am, I do care deeply about this district, and I do believe wholeheartedly we are making a better district every day," Poore replied.
  • Trumpeting

    When President-elect Trump announced he would, in a few days, force Congress to enact comprehensive health insurance for everyone, poor or rich, that would provide better and cheaper care than they've ever gotten, you had to wonder whether this guy is a miracle worker or a fool.
  • Putin and Trump

    Here's a thought exercise: What do you suppose would happen if Russian strongman Vladimir Putin decided to clarify remarks he reportedly made about Donald Trump during the election campaign?

Visit Arkansas

1.73-carat diamond found at Crater of Diamonds State Park

1.73-carat diamond found at Crater of Diamonds State Park

Jack Pearadin and Doug Nelsen found a 1.73-carat diamond after nearly a year of searching the park's field.

Most Viewed

  • State Treasurer staffer resigns after offensive comments

    Treasurer Dennis Milligan today announced he has accepted the resignation of Hunter Hatcher, an Outreach Coordinator for the Treasurer's office. Hatcher publicly stated on social media that because Donald Trump was taking office, "Gay jokes are back on ya bunch of homos," and also made derogatory comments (in the form of lame jokes) regarding the role of women.
  • Mayberry bill to restrict access to abortion passes House

    Rep. Andy Mayberry's bill to ban dilation and evacuation, the safest abortion procedure in the second trimester (used in 95 percent of all second-trimester abortions in the United States), easily passed in the House today 78-10, with 10 not voting and 2 voting present.
  • Treasurer Dennis Milligan expresses disappointment about offensive comments by staffer, will evaluate future role

    Treasurer Dennis Milligan today issued a statement condemning offensive comments made by a staffer, Hunter Hatcher, on social media.
  • Milligan aide: "Gay jokes are back on ya bunch of homos!"

    Hunter Hatcher, who started as Outreach Coordinator for the Treasurer's office under Dennis Milligan in 2015, took to social media to explain how things will be different in Trump's America (Hatcher is currently on leave from the state job but slated to return in December).
  • D.C. 'vandalism' of bus carrying Sylvan Hills students looks a lot different from outside

    A story is quickly going viral about what's being variously described as "vandalism" or an "attack" by protesters on a large tour bus carrying high school students — including four from Sylvan Hills High —  in Washington D.C. following Saturday's Women's March on Washington.  There's two sides to every coin, however, and videos shot from outside the bus show the driver motoring up to the protest, pausing briefly, and then forcing the bus through the crowd before speeding away.

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Open line

    • Stephen Smith THIS DATE IN ARKANSAS HISTORY 23-Jan 1887 Arkansas U.S. Senators Jones and Berry…

    • on January 23, 2017
  • Re: Open line

    • It's not just AR R's who loathe ethics, as SD R's work to overturn a…

    • on January 23, 2017
  • Re: State Treasurer staffer resigns after offensive comments

    • Feel free to go to the State Treasurer's FB page and leave a comment thanking…

    • on January 23, 2017

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation