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Birth Control Mandate Debate

WASHINGTON, DC (CNN) --
   The Obama administration formally asked the Supreme Court on Friday to keep in place a requirement in the health care reform law that certain religious-affiliated groups cover birth control and other reproductive health services in their employee insurance plans.
   The high court was poised to decide whether to grant a temporary injunction sought by a Catholic charity of nuns.
   The Denver-based Little Sisters of the Poor and other non-profits had filed a lawsuit against the federal government, saying the contraception coverage mandates violate their religious liberty.
   Justice Sonia Sotomayor issued an emergency injunction that preliminarily stayed the mandate for the charity, and sought a response from the Obama administration by Friday morning. The Catholic-affiliated groups have the option of submitting a rebuttal.
   It is not clear how Sotomayor will handle the matter ultimately, but one option would be to ask the broader court to weigh in.
 
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