Just hours before she arrived at Times Square to officiate the New Year’s Eve ball drop, Justice Sonia Sotomayor issued a last minute stay of the Affordable Care Act’s so-called contraception mandate in a case brought by a group of Colorado nuns.
The stay temporary alleviates the requirement, which otherwise would have gone into effect at midnight, that the nonprofit group provide emergency contraception measures as part of their health coverage or face penalties. The Obama administration had exempted religious groups from the mandate, but included religious-affiliated nonprofits under a narrower exemption that allows them to opt out of the employer-provided coverage.
The stay applies only to the Little Sisters of the Poor, and does not apply to related cases taken up by the Supreme Court involving secular groups, like Hobby Lobby, who object to the mandate.
Sotomayor gave the Obama administration until Friday to respond.
[h/t New York Times]
[Image via AP]
Have a tip we should know? email@example.com