House Republicans Allow Employer to Make Decisions on Contraception

CONCORD, NEW HAMPSHIRE – House Democratic Leader Terie Norelli, Policy Leader on Constitutional Review Committee Representative Chris Serlin, and Representative Jennifer Daler issued the following statements on passage of House Bill 1546, that would undermine health care for women and families across our State by putting employers between patients and their doctors.

House Democratic Leader Terie Norelli

“I never thought that in 2012 the New Hampshire Legislature would be debating the use of contraceptives. This issue is settled for Granite Staters. This out of touch agenda only goes to show that House Republicans are focused like a laser on social issues while jobs and the economy are left on the back burner.”

“Unfortunately, this has been the story at the State House for the past fourteen months. Bills that would be laughed out of any living room in New Hampshire have strong support among Republicans in the State House.”

Policy Leader on Constitutional Review Committee Representative Chris Serlin

“My Republicans colleagues are using the banner of religious freedom as a way to mask their blatant attacks on women’s health rights. No entity or individual faces a restriction of their religious liberty under current insurance law. This bill would prevent women from making their own decisions about contraception.”

Representative Jennifer Daler

“This religious argument was absent 12 years ago when a group of bipartisan members of the House and Senate passed Senate Bill 175. When it passed the House more than a decade ago, only 83 members voted against it. In 1999, nearly every member of Republican Leadership voted for this bill and was a part of the bipartisan coalition to pass that common sense bill – a coalition that consisted of 120 Republicans, 121 Democrats and two independents.”

“Contraceptive coverage is a basic part of women’s health care. We must not allow political ideology to be more important than reliable, quality healthcare for women.”