A federal judge has blocked a new Missouri law requiring insurers to offer policies excluding birth control coverage because it conflicts with a federal law mandating such coverage.<?xml:namespace prefix = o />
Judge Audry Fleissig issued a temporary restraining order Friday against the Missouri law. It was enacted in September when the Republican-led Legislature overrode a veto of Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon.
Missouri's law requires insurers to issue policies without contraception coverage if it runs contrary to the religious or moral beliefs of an individual or employer. The law appeared to be the first in the nation to directly rebut an Obama administration policy requiring insurers to cover birth control at no additional cost to women.
The judge said there "appears to be an irreconcilable conflict" between the state and federal laws.