US President Barack Obama Friday announced a compromise to defuse a row over access to birth control which prompted election-year Republican critics to claim he was waging a war on religion.
In a concession, Obama said his government would no longer require religious organizations to offer free contraception on employee health plans and decried opponents he said had turned the issue into a "political football."
But he stuck by the principle that all women should have free access to such services, putting the onus on insurance firms to offer birth control to those working for religious employers like Catholic hospitals.
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