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The Latest: Official decries blocking of birth control rules

Published
FILE - In this Aug. 26, 2016, file photo, a one-month dosage of hormonal birth control pills is displayed in Sacramento, Calif. A U.S. judge will hear arguments over California’s attempt to block new rules by the Trump administration allowing more employers to claim religious objections to providing birth control benefits.
The rules set to go into effect on Monday, Jan. 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The Latest on rulings on Trump birth control coverage rules (all times local):

5:40 p.m.

A federal health official says the nationwide injunction on Trump administration rules that allowed more employers to opt out of providing women with no-cost birth control will force Americans to "violate" their consciences.

Health and Human Services Department spokeswoman Caitlin Oakley says in a statement that "no American should be forced to violate his or her own conscience in order to abide by the laws and regulations governing our health care system."

She says the new rules "uphold the freedoms afforded all Americans under our Constitution."

The statement did not indicate whether the Trump administration would appeal.

U.S. District Judge Wendy Beetlestone in Philadelphia issued the injunction Monday , stopping the government from enforcing rules scheduled to take effect imminently.

A federal judge in California on Sunday blocked the rules 13 states and Washington, D.C.

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4:50 p.m. Monday

A federal judge in Philadelphia is imposing a nationwide injunction on new Trump administration rules that allowed more employers to opt out of providing women with no-cost birth control.

U.S. District Judge Wendy Beetlestone issued the injunction Monday, stopping the government from enforcing rules scheduled to take effect imminently.

In her order, Beetlestone says states should be protected from the potential harm from the rule, which could include people losing contraceptive coverage and seeking state services.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, who sued, calls the ruling a victory for the health and economic independence of women.

A federal judge in California on Sunday blocked the rules 13 states and Washington, D.C.

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3:30 p.m. Sunday

A U.S. judge in California has blocked Trump administration rules, which would allow more employers to opt out of providing women with no-cost birth control, from taking effect in 13 states and Washington, D.C.

Judge Haywood Gilliam on Sunday granted a request for a preliminary injunction by California, 12 other states and Washington, D.C. The plaintiffs sought to prevent the rules from taking effect as scheduled on Monday while a lawsuit against them moved forward.

But Gilliam rejected their request that he block the rules nationwide.

California and the other states argue that the changes would force women to turn to state-funded programs for birth control and lead to unintended pregnancies.

The U.S. Department of Justice says the rules protect a small group of objectors from violating their beliefs.

FILE - In this March 25, 2015 file photo, Margot Riphagen of New Orleans, La., wears a birth control pills costume during a protest in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington. A U.S. judge will hear arguments Friday, Jan. 11, 2019, over California's attempt to block new rules by the Trump administration that would allow more employers to opt out of providing no-cost birth control to women. The new rules are set to go into effect on Monday, Jan. 14, 2019.  (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)
FILE - In this March 25, 2015 file photo, Margot Riphagen of New Orleans, La., wears a birth control pills costume during a protest in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington. A U.S. judge will hear arguments Friday, Jan. 11, 2019, over California's attempt to block new rules by the Trump administration that would allow more employers to opt out of providing no-cost birth control to women. The new rules are set to go into effect on Monday, Jan. 14, 2019.  (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)
FILE - In this March 25, 2015 file photo, Margot Riphagen of New Orleans, La., wears a birth control pills costume during a protest in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington. A U.S. judge will hear arguments Friday, Jan. 11, 2019, over California's attempt to block new rules by the Trump administration that would allow more employers to opt out of providing no-cost birth control to women. The new rules are set to go into effect on Monday, Jan. 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)
FILE - In this Aug. 26, 2016, file photo, a one-month dosage of hormonal birth control pills is displayed in Sacramento, Calif. A U.S. judge will hear arguments over California’s attempt to block new rules by the Trump administration allowing more employers to claim religious objections to providing birth control benefits.
The rules set to go into effect on Monday, Jan. 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)
FILE - In this Aug. 26, 2016, file photo, a one-month dosage of hormonal birth control pills is displayed in Sacramento, Calif. A U.S. judge will hear arguments over California’s attempt to block new rules by the Trump administration allowing more employers to claim religious objections to providing birth control benefits. The rules set to go into effect on Monday, Jan. 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)