Hobby Lobby, a retailer that is owned entirely by devout Christians, will not have to pay for abortifacients for their employees. That portion of the insanely deceptively named Affordable Care Act/Obamacare was struck down in regards to employers in similar situations. I assume that other employers, such as the Catholic Church, will also benefit from this decision.
The US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) made a move that has unfortunately become an increasingly rare occurrence - it ruled correctly on a case concerning an issue that had everything to do with Liberty, Conscience, and Religious Freedom. Although again reminding us that the bulwark between right and wrong is tearing at the seams - the split decision was a razor-thin 5-4 margin, on this occasion the Court clearly got it right.
Pregnancy has come to mean only when a fertilized egg is impregnated in the uterine wall - an extremely narrow definition willfully concocted to render all other pregnancies non-starters and thus not worthy of any consideration by the law. This of course leaves the medical community in a "painted themselves into a corner" position as even a fertilized egg that has become implanted in the Fallopian tubes is referred to as an Ectopic Pregnancy. As pregnancy does occur prior to implantation in the uterus, Ru-486 is therefore an abortifacient despite the Herculean efforts that the Left expends to claim that it is not.
Dana Loesch in a piece in The Blaze dated June 30, 2014, noted the massive degree of irony in the "wanting it both ways" claims made by rabid feminists and their Leftist allies:
".....Here are some of the slogans Loesch proposed:
“Not my boss’s business — but I want my boss to pay for it!”
“Hands off my uterus — just give it your dollars instead.”
“Women united will never be defeated (so pay for our birth control).”
“Not the church, not the state, women must control our fate (please finance our fate).”
Loesch said women’s access to contraceptives is no more restricted than it was before the ruling. All that has changed is that employers are no longer forced to pay for the contraceptives of others in violation of their religious liberties, she said......"
The decision is a victory for the Green family that owns the Hobby Lobby arts and crafts chain and the Hahns who own Conestoga, a cabinet making company, who had challenged the so called contraceptive mandate saying it forced them to either violate their faith or pay ruinous fines. The government defended the provision as an essential part of health care coverage for women.............
The court rejected the government’s claim that neither the owners nor the corporations could bring a religious liberty claim. “Protecting the free-exercise rights of corporations like Hobby Lobby, Conestoga … protects the religious liberty of the humans who own and control those companies,” Alito wrote.
Alito says the court has “little trouble” concluding that the HHS contraceptive mandate substantially burdens the exercise of region: "The Hahns and the Greens believe that providing the coverage demanded by the HHS regulation is connected to the destruction of an embryo in a way that is sufficient to make it immoral for them to provide the coverage.”
“The Government has failed to show that the contraceptive mandate is the least restrict means of furthering that interest," according to the majority opinion.
Alito wrote that the owners of Hobby Lobby believe that the coverage required of the health care law "is connected to the destruction of an embryo in a way that is sufficient to make it immoral for them to provide the coverage … HHS [Department of Health and Human Services] has not shown that it lacks other means of achieving its desired goal without imposing a substantial burden on the exercise of religion by the objecting parties in these cases.”
"Protecting the free-exercise rights of corporations like Hobby Lobby, Conestoga and Mardel protects the religious liberty of the humans who own and control those FRFR companies,” Alito wrote in the majority opinion.
Alito said the opinion was limited to closely held corporations: “Our decision should not be understood to hold that an insurance coverage mandate must necessarily fall if it conflicts with an employer’s religious beliefs. Other coverage requirements, such as immunizations, may be supported by different interests (for example, the need to combat the spread of infectious diseases) and may involve different arguments about the least restrictive means of providing them. “
[Here comes the voice of those who will not brook any exercise of conscience in the face of State Power whatsoever]
"Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote a dissent, joined on the merits by Justice Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor, and Steven Breyer.
In her dissent Ginsburg –disagreed with Alito --and worried about what other challenges might come next. :”Reading the Act expansively, as the court does, raises a host of “Me, too” questions. Can an employer in business for profit opt out of coverage for blood transfusions, vaccinations, antidepressants, or medications derived from pigs, based on the employer’s sincerely held religious beliefs opposing those medical practices.”
Ginsburg wrote , “The exemption sought by Hobby Lobby and Conestoga would override significant interests of the corporations’ employees and covered dependents. It would deny legions of women who do not hold their employers’ beliefs access to contraceptive coverage that the ACA would otherwise secure”
She took the unusual step of reading her dissent from the bench.
White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest: "President Obama believes that people should make personal health care decisions for themselves rather than their bosses deciding for them. Today’s decision jeopardizes the health of women who are employed by these companies. As Millions of women know firsthand, contraception is often vital to their health and well-being. That is why the Affordable Care Act ensures that women have access to contraceptive care, along with other preventative care, like vaccines and cancer screenings. We will work with Congress to make sure that any women effected by this decision will still have the same coverage and vital health services as everyone else."
DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz: "I am disappointed and deeply concerned by the Supreme Court’s decision today in the case of Burwell v. Hobby Lobby. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, millions of Americans have gained access to preventive services without out-of-pocket costs, including birth control. However, this decision takes money out of the pockets of women and their families and allows for-profit employers to deny access to certain health care benefits based on their personal beliefs. Nearly sixty percent of women who use birth control do so for more than just family planning."