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HHS Mandate "Evolves"

By Stu Nolan

Now that the election is behind us, we have been expecting the Obama Administration to attempt to "accommodate" those who object to the coerced provision of contraception and abortifacients as a component of their employee's health insurance coverage. We have been predicting that this would occur by reaching a "compromise" whereby certain institutions run by clergy and even certain service organizations would be exempted from the mandate, but we also predicted that business owners with conscientious objections to the mandate would have no recourse within the Administration's so-called "compromise". Alas, this is precisely what has come to pass.

Today, the Department of Health and Human Services announced that its "compromise" would include -- for nonprofit institutions connected to the Church and that "certify" to certain conditions -- an exemption for those for whom the mandate would violate the teachings of heir faith. Yet, no such exemption is available for business owners. Pro-life leaders react here and here.

You can brush up on the basis for objecting to the HHS Mandate by consulting the sound analysis of Ed Whelan, president of the Ethics & Public Policy Center, and Walter Weber, attorney with the American Center for Law & Justice here and here, respectively.

This post-election "evolution" is of course nothing more than an effort to placate opposition after this "right" to compel others to pay for one's abortifacients and contraception was invented in order to drum up enthusiasm for the incumbent this past November. It is completely inadequate. It violates the religious liberty of the faithful and must not be permitted to gain the aura of legitimacy in the legal establishment.

For more great resources on this subject, consult The Public Discourse, the work of EPPC President Ed Whelan and Notre Dame Law Professor Gerard Bradley as posted on National Review's Bench Memos, as well as the efforts of George Mason University Law Professor Helen Alvare.

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