This morning Laura Murphy, Director of our Washington Legislative Office appeared on NBC’s Today to discuss the recent controversy surrounding the Obama administration’s announcement that it would keep in place a proposed rule that ensures that new insurance plans include coverage of contraception.

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The ACLU has always been a strong advocate for religious freedom. For nearly a century we have defended the rights of all religious believers – from majority and minority faiths alike – to practice their religion. And to be clear, the rule does not require religious institutions like churches or synagogues that hire people of the same belief for the purposes of advancing that faith to purchase birth control coverage for their employees. Moreover, clergy remain free to espouse their beliefs, and individual women remain free to follow those beliefs or not, according to their own conscience.   However, the fundamental promise of religious liberty in this country doesn’t create a right to impose those views on others, including ignoring civil rights laws or denying critical health care.