On Monday, a federal judge overturned a Missouri law that would allow employers to deny contraceptive coverage for their employees.

U.S. District Judge Audrey Fleissig ruled that the law was unconstitutional because it violated the Affordable Care Act. Judge Fleissig determined that, according to the U.S. Constitution, federal law takes precedent over state laws when there is a legal conflict.

In September 2012, the Missouri state legislature overrode the Governor’s veto of the law which would exempt religious institutions from providing contraception coverage to employees. In addition the legislature gave a public rebuttal to the Obama Administration for the Affordable Care Act, the first in the nation. According to the Guttmacher Institute, 20 states [PDF] allow for an employer to deny contraceptive coverage for religious or moral reasons.

Media Resources: Associated Press 3/18/2013; ThinkProgress 3/18/2013; Guttmacher Institute 3/1/2013; Feminist Newswire 9/13/2012

Flag of Missouri painted on grungy wooden background from Shutterstock

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