Group sues to block newest law

Missouri government already has been sued over its newest law.

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The Greater Kansas City Coalition of Labor Union Women had faxed a 13-page lawsuit to the Cole County Circuit Clerk’s office within hours of the Legislature’s overriding Gov. Jay Nixon’s veto of a bill that allows employers to exempt coverage of contraception, abortion and sterilization in their employees’ health insurance policies, on moral or religious grounds.

The suit asks the court to declare “that Senate Bill 749 is invalid in its entirety” and should not be enforced by Missouri officials.

The case was assigned to Presiding Circuit Judge Patricia Joyce. No hearings have been scheduled.

“It is the law of our state, and I would expect that everyone operating in the state should follow it,” Nixon said at a Wednesday afternoon news conference after the override vote. “Whether that leads to some sort of litigation on down the road, that would be for others to comment on.”

The lawsuit, filed by Kansas City labor lawyer Edward E. Keenan, says the new law violates several provisions of the Missouri and U.S. Constitutions.

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