01/28/2013 06:55 pm ET

Texas Obamacare Bill Would Give Tax Breaks To Companies That Don't Cover Contraception

Texas may consider rewarding companies for violating a key Obamacare provision.

State Rep. Jonathan Stickland (R) introduced a bill in the Texas House of Representatives on Thursday that would give tax breaks to companies that don't cover emergency contraception such as the morning-after pill, the Austin American-Statesman reports. Under Obamacare, company health insurance plans are required to fully cover employees' contraception costs, and companies must pay a federal fine if they do not.

The Texas bill, if it becomes law, could help wipe out the financial disincentive for some companies to not cover emergency contraception. The state tax break would be up to the total amount that companies pay in state taxes or the total amount of the federal fine, according to the Austin American-Statesman.

Obamacare's contraception mandate has faced a number of court challenges. A federal judge ruled in November that Hobby Lobby must cover employees' contraception costs after the company filed a lawsuit requesting an exemption, claiming that the contraception mandate violated their religious freedom. Federal judges have dismissed several several similar lawsuits. The Supreme Court declined to block the contraception mandate in December.

Some companies' opposition to the contraception mandate may hurt their bottom line. Hobby Lobby's vocal opposition to covering contraception has spurred a backlash, with a petition to boycott the company garnering more than 70,000 signatures.

(Hat tip: ThinkProgress.)



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