- Associated Press - Monday, June 30, 2014

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - Elected statewide officials in New Hampshire, all of whom are women, are split along party lines by the Supreme Court’s ruling that a private company doesn’t have to cover birth control.

U.S. Sen. Kelly Ayotte, the lone Republican of the five, says the case involving Hobby Lobby was about religious freedom and the 5-4 ruling released Monday declares that religious liberty is protected. She says people shouldn’t be forced to comply with government mandates that violate their faith.

From the other side of the aisle, Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, Reps. Carol Shea-Porter and Annie Kuster, and Gov. Maggie Hassan used words like “disappointment,” and “a step back” to describe the ruling. They say it will make women’s lives more difficult and expensive, and potentially put their health at risk.