Wehby, Merkley differ on contraceptives ruling

SALEM, Ore. (AP) Oregon's candidates for U.S. Senate are taking differing views of Monday's Supreme Court decision on insurance coverage for contraceptives.

The high court ruled that some companies with religious objections can avoid the contraceptives requirement in President Barack Obama's health care overhaul.

Democratic incumbent Jeff Merkley denounced the decision, releasing a statement that called the ruling "an unacceptable intrusion of bosses into personal health options."

Republican Monica Wehby's campaign manager says Wehby "doesn't see a problem with the ruling," as long as every woman has access to contraception through other means.

The court's ruling suggested ways the Obama administration could offer birth control to women whose employers refused.

Oregon reactions

For women whose employers don't have religious views against the use of contraceptives, The Affordable Care Act birth control benefit plan remains in place, said Laura Terrill Patten, Executive Director of Planned Parenthood Advocates.

Patten said her biggest issue is "there are now some secular for profit corporations that hire and service the public that are picking and choosing which laws to follow."

"You can't do it just haphazardly to get rid of it, it has to be because of sincere religious conditions so because of that we take it as a really good thing, it's a good sign," St. Mary's Catholic Priest Bryce McProud said.

Patten said "this is not a social issue, it's an economic and medical issue." She added that birth control is vital to a women's ability to succeed economically.