There’s been a troubling decision involving one of the many legal challenges to the HHS mandate in ObamaCare which forces employer provided health insurance plans to cover abortion pills. A federal district court judge has ruled against the Oklahoma City-based Hobby Lobby and Mardel – companies that challenged the HHS mandate claiming the regulations violate the religious beliefs of the owners.
In its decision, the court concluded that the retailers must follow contraceptive health insurance rules that begin Jan. 1st. U.S. District Judge Joe Heaton said the retailers were “secular, for-profit corporations” and did not have free-exercise rights under the First Amendment.
This latest decision underscores what’s at stake here: constitutionally protected religious liberties. The ACLJ is aggressively challenging this mandate, representing three direct challenges to the mandate itself, along with filing amicus briefs backing challenges in a dozen other cases.
As I told Megyn Kelly on FOX News today, this decision is just one more example of the real division that exists in the courts on this issue. Our position is clear: the idea that companies must check their religious beliefs at the door is simply absurd. The fact is that business owners must be able to conduct their businesses in accordance with their faith.
The division in the courts sets the stage for further appeals and a road to the U.S. Supreme Court. That’s exactly where this critical issue is headed.