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Hobby Lobby Has Its Day in Court; Argues Case for Religious Freedom
Christian Post ^ | 05/27/2013 | By Melissa Barnhart

Posted on 05/27/2013 8:58:28 AM PDT by SeekAndFind

Hobby Lobby's case for exemption from a part of the Affordable Care Act that requires religious employers to cover Plan B and Ella One emergency contraceptives that can cause early abortion was argued in court on Thursday.

An eight-judge panel (one judge was absent) in the 10th Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals in Denver, Colo., granted the Oklahoma City-based arts-and-crafts chain a full court hearing, which Hobby Lobby's attorneys' believe is significant because a full-court hearing is rarely granted. "It's a very rare step, because the nine-judge panel hears the most significant cases," said Lori Windham, senior counsel at the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, who's one of six attorneys working on behalf of Hobby Lobby.

Kyle Duncan, general counsel for The Becket Fund, argued the case Thursday for the Green family, who own Hobby Lobby and the Christian bookstore Mardel, in Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius, and the government was represented by the Justice Department. Each side had 30 minutes to present their arguments to the court.

Windham told CP that the appellate court usually takes several months to make its decision, but they're hopeful the ruling will be expeditious because on July 1 the mandate will kick-in and Hobby Lobby will begin accruing penalties that could amount to $1.3 million a day, which is why they're asking the court to act quickly.

If Hobby Lobby loses its case, Windham said the next step will be to argue the case before the Supreme Court, although her team is confident the court's decision will be in their favor.

"This is a very important case because what's at stake here is whether you have to give up your religious beliefs if you go into business and whether the government can take your religious freedom away," Windham said. "The government has said the mandate is not a substantial burden on the Green family, but they're clearly wrong."

A lawyer for the U.S. Department of Justice argued that allowing for-profit corporations to exempt themselves from requirements that violate their religious beliefs would be tantamount to businesses imposing their beliefs on employees, according to Fox News.

Duncan believes the government is taking the position that if you're in a profit-driven business, you have no rights. "Business owners ought to be able to go into a court and argue that their rights should be protected," Duncan said. "This case is at the forefront of the challenge to the mandate."

"Hobby Lobby has no objections to most contraceptives," Duncan added. "They're objecting to a narrow subset of drugs – sometimes called emergency contraceptives – that violates their belief that life should be protected from the moment of conception. The government admits that these drugs can act that way – to put newly conceived life at risk."

"The only issue here is whether Hobby Lobby and the Green family can be forced to violate their religious beliefs to cover this narrow subset of drugs, or whether the government can threaten them with draconian penalties to force them to give up their faith.

According to the Becket Fund website, there are 52 separate lawsuits challenging the Health and Human Services mandate.

Although the 10th Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals is a nine-judge panel, the case was heard by only eight judges because one judge has senior status and is semi-retired.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Front Page News; Government
KEYWORDS: abortion; deathpanels; hobbylobby; obamacare; religiousfreedom; religiousliberty; zerocare

1 posted on 05/27/2013 8:58:28 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

Is it true that Muslims are exempt?


2 posted on 05/27/2013 9:02:52 AM PDT by Cowboy Bob (Democrats: Robbing Peter to buy Paul's vote.)
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To: SeekAndFind

It’s important to remind the low or ill-informed that it was the separation of government from getting into peoples religion that Jefferson was talking about. Not the other way around.


3 posted on 05/27/2013 9:04:47 AM PDT by Track9 (hey Kalid.. kalid.. bang you're dead)
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To: SeekAndFind
or whether the government can threaten them with draconian penalties

.

"Don't you mean "draconian taxes"?


4 posted on 05/27/2013 9:05:16 AM PDT by Jeff Chandler (People are idiots.)
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To: Cowboy Bob

> Is it true that Muslims are exempt?

Yes, but the Amish and Mennonites are also exempt (not intended as yet another Amish joke).


5 posted on 05/27/2013 9:17:12 AM PDT by Westbrook (Children do not divide your love, they multiply it.)
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To: Jeff Chandler

I personally hold all democrat politicians and their rino cohorts and the liberal supreme court judges as well as the evil one, Justice John Roberts, and believe that they are guilty of espionage and treason against the citizens and Constitution of America. All democrats and all rinos who support the obamnation should be put out of office and sent overseas to the nations they have originally came out of as they support unconstitutional policies and laws.


6 posted on 05/27/2013 9:25:07 AM PDT by kindred (Jesus Christ is the Lord God and Messiah of Israel, a present help in time of trouble.)
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To: Westbrook

What is the justification for these exemptions. Why is it limited to these groups?


7 posted on 05/27/2013 9:25:47 AM PDT by Cowboy Bob (Democrats: Robbing Peter to buy Paul's vote.)
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To: Cowboy Bob; Westbrook

It is not just limited to these groups.

We belonged to Christian Healthcare Ministries, a Christian Healthcare cost sharing operation (NOT insurance) that is allowed in lieu of Obamacare.

http://www.chministries.org/


8 posted on 05/27/2013 9:33:58 AM PDT by Dr. Sivana (There's no salvation in politics.)
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To: Cowboy Bob

Forget Muslims. How are “big” corporations like McD’s and GE exempt? I’m no lawyer, but I would think the fact that 1800 exemptions have been passed out has to violate the equal protection under the law clause.


9 posted on 05/27/2013 11:16:21 AM PDT by Clock King
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To: Cowboy Bob

> What is the justification for these exemptions. Why is it
> limited to these groups?

The Amish and Mennonites do not use insurance, because it violates their religious conscience. This is a formal teaching of their church.

The exemption is disallowed for those outside of groups that formally teach against insurance, because you may be able to just say it’s a matter of religious conscience, when in fact, it’s not.

There is also an exemption for those who can demonstrate participation in an alternative that is deemed viable by the governing authorities. Participation in Samaritans, for example, is exempt from 0bamao care.

All that being said, I vigorously disagree that the government should be allowed to compel anybody to buy anything, regardless if the brainy elites think it’s “for their own good.”


10 posted on 05/27/2013 12:22:58 PM PDT by Westbrook (Children do not divide your love, they multiply it.)
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To: SeekAndFind

May God bless Hobby Lobby with a victory.


11 posted on 05/27/2013 12:48:57 PM PDT by ReformationFan
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To: Clock King

equal protection.... lol, your killing me with these jokes!


12 posted on 05/27/2013 2:52:34 PM PDT by esoxmagnum (The rats have been trained to pull the D voting lever to get their little food pellet)
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To: SeekAndFind; red irish; fastrock; NorthernCrunchyCon; UMCRevMom@aol.com; Finatic; fellowpatriot; ...
+

Freep-mail me to get on or off my pro-life and Catholic List:

Add me / Remove me

Please ping me to note-worthy Pro-Life or Catholic threads, or other threads of general interest.

13 posted on 05/27/2013 2:53:45 PM PDT by narses
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Please Contribute Today!

Woo hoo!!
Less than $7.9k to Go!

We can do this!!
FReepers ROCK!!

14 posted on 05/27/2013 3:30:27 PM PDT by RedMDer (You are Free Republic. There are no outside influences. Just us, all of us. Please donate today!)
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To: SeekAndFind

And yet they buy all of their crap from China, giving millions to a Commie country that performs mandatory abortions.

I guess their religous beliefs stop at the US border.


15 posted on 05/27/2013 6:52:16 PM PDT by frickin_frackin
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To: frickin_frackin

“And yet they buy all of their crap from China, giving millions to a Commie country that performs mandatory abortions.”

What of Catholics/Christians who do the same?


16 posted on 05/27/2013 7:37:02 PM PDT by treetopsandroofs (Had FDR been GOP, there would have been no World Wars, just "The Great War" and "Roosevelt's Wars".)
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To: treetopsandroofs

The business operators could open their factories here in the USA. Sure, that would mean that the costs of goods may be a little higher, and the profit margin a little lower, but at least they wouldn’t be hypocrites by blasting US policy and at the same time supporting China’s.


17 posted on 05/27/2013 8:24:29 PM PDT by frickin_frackin
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To: Cowboy Bob

The ragheads are exempt. Odumbo’s religion will always get an exemption.


18 posted on 05/27/2013 10:27:38 PM PDT by max americana (fired liberals in our company after the election, & laughed while they cried (true story))
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To: SeekAndFind

This will go nowhere. The courts are fully complicit with the evil.


19 posted on 05/28/2013 5:17:44 AM PDT by Rich21IE
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To: Westbrook

RE: I vigorously disagree that the government should be allowed to compel anybody to buy anything

Justice Roberts already said you are not being compelled to buy healthcare. You are simply being TAXED for not doing so.


20 posted on 05/28/2013 7:46:03 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

> Justice Roberts already said you are not being compelled to
> buy healthcare. You are simply being TAXED for not doing so.

That’s a distinction without a difference.

Roberts must think we’re idiots.


21 posted on 05/28/2013 8:08:41 AM PDT by Westbrook (Children do not divide your love, they multiply it.)
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To: SeekAndFind

Oh, we won’t stop you from freely living your life. You just have to pay protection money in order to do it.


22 posted on 05/28/2013 8:53:02 AM PDT by RWB Patriot ("My ability is a value that must be purchased and I don't recognize anyone's need as a claim on me.")
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