SCOTUS to hear religious freedom challenges to HHS mandate

The Supreme Court announced Tuesday it will hear two challenges to the Health and Human Services abortion and contraception mandate enacted as part of President Obama’s Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Two companies, nation-wide arts and crafts retailer Hobby Lobby and Pennsylvania cabinet maker Conestoga Wood Specialties, argue that the administrative requirement to subsidize employees’ abortion and contraception in their employer-sponsored health coverage is a violation of the religious beliefs that are part and parcel of their business.

From the AP:

The Supreme Court has agreed to referee another dispute over President Barack Obama’s health care law, whether businesses can use religious objections to escape a requirement to cover birth control for employees.The justices said Tuesday they will take up an issue that has divided the lower courts in the face of roughly 40 lawsuits from for-profit companies asking to be spared from having to cover some or all forms of contraception.

The court will consider two cases. One involves Hobby Lobby Inc., an Oklahoma City-based arts and crafts chain with 13,000 full-time employees. Hobby Lobby won in the lower courts.

The other case is an appeal from Conestoga Wood Specialties Corp., a Pennsylvania company that employs 950 people in making wood cabinets. Lower courts rejected the company’s claims.
This decision is likely to become an inflection point in American religious freedom jurisprudence, especially as religious convictions come increasingly into conflict with sexual activism on marriage, abortion and so-called “non-discrimination” statutes.For more about Conestoga Wood, visit their page at Alliance Defending Freedom.

For more on Hobby Lobby, visit the case page at Becket Fund.

  • ahermit

    If Hobby Lobby were owned by Jehovah’s Witnesses should they be able to deny their employees coverage for blood transfusions?


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