Main | Tuesday, November 26, 2013

SCOTUS Accepts Hobby Lobby Case

The Supreme Court today agreed to hear Hobby Lobby's appeal of the portion of Obamacare which mandates that employers provide contraception coverage.
The high court last year narrowly upheld the key funding provision of the health care law, a blockbuster ruling affirming that most Americans would be required to purchase insurance or pay a financial penalty -- the so-called "individual mandate."  The constitutional debate now shifts to the separate employer mandates and whether corporations and religious institutions themselves enjoy the same First Amendment rights as individuals. Three federal appeals courts around the country have struck down the contraception coverage rule, while two other appeals courts have upheld it. That "circuit split" made a Supreme Court review more likely. Among the plaintiffs is Hobby Lobby, Inc. a nationwide chain of about 500 for-profit arts and crafts stores. David Green and his family are the owners and say their Christian beliefs clash with parts of the law's mandates for comprehensive coverage. They say some of the drugs that would be provided prevent human embryos from being implanted in a woman's womb, which the Greens equate to abortion. The privately held company does not object to funding other forms of contraception -- such as condoms and diaphragms -- for their roughly 13,000 employees, which Hobby Lobby says represent a variety of faiths. Companies that refuse to provide the coverage could be fined up to $1.3 million daily.
Christianist groups are doing cartwheels on Twitter.

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