The Senate on Thursday killed the so called "Blunt Amendment," which would have allowed any employer with a moral objection to deny coverage for birth control.
The current exemption to President Obama's controversial contraception mandate only allows religious organizations to omit birth control as part of their health insurance plans.
The amendment proposed by GOP Sen. Roy Blunt would have broadened that religious exemption to include any employer who objects to birth control for moral or religious reasons.
The vote was 51-48, largely along party lines.
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The Washington Post reports just one Republican Senator, Olympia Snowe of Maine, voted against the measure. Three Democratic Senators supported it -- Pennsylvania's Robert Casey, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Ben Nelson of Nebraska.