Skip to comments.Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. (Hobby Lobby WINS!)
Posted on 06/30/2014 7:36:22 AM PDT by xzins
Held: As applied to closely held corporations, the HHS regulations imposing the contraceptive mandate violate RFRA. Pp. 1649.
(Excerpt) Read more at supremecourt.gov ...
I’ve weighed in from the beginning. I don’t like this. It will backfire and, in time, will enable discrimination against us as Christians. Fortunately, it was a VERY narrow ruling so that may save us.
But did you see the one where the Government can pay for the Contraception per the opinion? So the Government will soon be paying for it out of existing ACA funds.
I may stand alone here, but I think this ruling is a disaster for the reasons stated.
This decision concerns only the contraceptive mandate andshould not be understood to hold that all insurance-coverage mandates, e.g., for vaccinations or blood transfusions, must necessarilyfall if they conflict with an employers religious beliefs. Nor does it provide a shield for employers who might cloak illegal discriminationas a religious practice. United States v. Lee, 455 U. S. 252, which upheld the payment of Social Security taxes despite an employers religious objection, is not analogous. It turned primarily on the special problems associated with a national system of taxation; and if Lee were a RFRA case, the fundamental point would still be that there isno less restrictive alternative to the categorical requirement to pay taxes. Here, there is an alternative to the contraceptive mandate.Pp. 4549.
I don’t think it’s a disaster. It appeals to the RFRA, so if that is ever appealed, then it would come up again for review.
We are all doomed anyway so as Hilary says “What difference does it make?”
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Two fingers at a time? :)
Gee,I wonder if her being exempt from OsamaObamaCare might have anything to do with her support of it.
Interesting that SCOTUS assumes the regulation serves a compelling government interest; and strikes it down on other grounds.
Can we all tell Sandra to, ‘Fluke’, off now?
It appears this decision addresses the “for-profit” employers only. Will they have to provide the secondary insurance like non-profits are doing that will provide the specific contraceptive with which they religiously object?
Uh but Congress would have to authorize that expense. I know that that won’t stop Obama, but he only has 2 years left...and hopefully less if republicans win the senate and grow a pair. I can dream can’t I?
This is wonderful news.My husband and I were watching it live.WOOOHOOOO
The Hyde amendment will likely keep it.from being funded by govt.
Here’s an important question that we all need to consider...
Do you all think Obama is going to actually COMPLY with the Supreme Court ruling? What if he were to unilaterally declare that he will not abide by the ruling because “discrimination against women’s health care choices and rights will not be tolerated by the Supreme Court”?
Folks, I’m telling you... Don’t think for a moment these thoughts aren’t currently crossing the tyrannical Kenyan communist dictator’s mind.
And then Scalia said I had shown particular contempt for the very framework of the Constitution....
I wish he would make an announcement that he was not going to comply with the ruling. I think that would push things over the edge. I really believe he is on shaky footing already. That’s why I believe a lawsuit against him is a good idea. I think the court is concerned with his runaway power grab. Reid will never let impeachment happen, but the court is ready to do their part. That’s just my guess.
hmmm. seems to be some confusion on this point. Judge napolitano just stated on Fox that this ruling does extend to non profits which would be great news for us catholic school folks
See post #21
But then the big question is, who would actually make Obama adhere to the ruling if he chooses not to? Can we actually rely on Boehner, Issa, and the GOP to do this??
From the decision:
..........”Religious employers, such as churches, are exempt from this contraceptive mandate. HHS has also effectively exempted religious nonprofit organizations with religious objections to providing coverage for contraceptive services. Under this accommodation, the insurance issuer must exclude contraceptive coverage from the employers plan and provide plan participants with separate payments for contraceptive services without imposing any costsharing requirements on the employer, its insurance plan, or its employee beneficiaries.”..................
So, it sounds to me like they will be in the same position as Catholic schools to me....what say you?
I dunno. I would guess if it plays out with the courts ruling to “re-balance” the powers in this country, and obammy completely disregarding it that we will see Bundy style standoffs all over this country. Well, certainly in the red states.
Obama doesn’t need to “comply” with this ruling it requires no action on his part.. it merely states that HL does not have to pay for 4 specific forms of contraception for its employees
HL was set to be required to pay fines on a per-employee basis for not providing contraceptive coverage, now they won’t face such fines, no action required on behalf of HHS.
Obammy has to comply in that his IRS can not pursue penalties from Hobby Lobby. (they have to go after tea party people or someone else he has an issue with )
Without reading the rest of the decision it is not clear that they are defining HL as a religious employer it seems in the section of the decision you have provided defines religious employers as churches..I don’t think they are referring to HL as a “Religious employer”
Regarding churches and public schools however, this is an interesting clarification on the “accommodation” the administration has given catholic churches specifically the section that says insurance companies must make plan participants pay separately for contraception that can’t be “cost-shared” i.e. people working for catholic non profits must pay for their own contraception..I think this section was written as a clarification of that issue not in regards to HL
right and If the IRS pursues them ( i.e. the fines) then they don’t have to pay. Do you think obama will send SWAT teams to place locks on the doors of HL nationwide for not paying IRS fines?
I think he would like to do so . but I don’t think he will go this far.
I agree... I think he’d like to... but I don’t think he will go that far either.
Can this ruling be applied to small businesses who operate based on their religious convictions?
I’m thinking of bakers who refuse to create wedding cakes for gay marriages.
Your post is correct. I included this section to show how the contraceptive mandate is being handled currently with religious non-profits. (I actually thought the company was forced to pay for the third party, maybe not?)
My question was, are Hobby Lobby and other for-profit companies who object on religious grounds, going to be forced to handle this the same way...I assume so.
You made the comment that you wish Catholic schools could be exempt....are they not? Or are they forced to provide it by a third party essentially?
...I'm losing count.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen more outright trolls, “concern trolls” and weepy defeatists as I have on these Hobby Lobby threads today. If the Viking Kitties are hungry (and I have a hunch they are), there’s a whole buffet waiting for them!
I think Alito went out of his way to indicate that it did not serve a compelling government interest. He said that the government has provided millions upon millions of exemptions, to include exemptions simply to health insurance plans that have been grandfathered in. All of these plans have zero requirement to provide this contraception coverage.
The brilliant constitutional scholar that is currently pres(id)ent has a staff to think for him, form opinions for him, etc. I have yet to see any evidence at all that indicates that he wishes to be a tyrant; he was elected to comply with liberal ideology, not lead.
Regarding your question I am assuming otherwise... that HL is not required to to have contraception handled in the same way ( round about way through insurance plans) as the non-profits. In the concurring opinion, justice Kennedy noted that the government could pay for it.. I think that the section you referenced was referring to non -profits only NOT HL. The administration “accommodation” only applies to non profits in my understanding.
Catholic schools, it is my understanding were part of the “accommodation” granted where insurance companies must pay instead of catholic institutions. In this SCOTUS clarification it appears that in regard to non-profits employees must pay insurance companies out of pocket for contraception coverage and that increased costs of insurers can’t be turned back on the church through higher premium costs for the plans Again my thoughts are this section was included to clarify the contraception mandate on non-profits not HL.
I hope you are right.
I was just reading Alito, and Alito says that the non-profits have been provided an accommodation and the government didn’t even think to offer that same accommodation to the for-profits, thereby making it a MANDATE only directed at for-profits.
The accommodation, as I understand it, involves the insurance company having to pay for the coverage that is denied by those with a religious objection without any remuneration from the company being covered. In other words, the insurance companies eat the cost...BUT...if I recall correctly, they are guaranteed a certain level of profitability by the government because they are the providers of health care coverage under ObamaCare.
As you suggest about schools, I do think a business will have to make it known somehow that they have a religious objection to providing the full health plan dictated by ObamaCare. I imagine it will end up being some kind of application.
The school’s (and others) objection involves having to be a participant at any level by affirming some government document that they are not providing the coverage, and then that triggering a secondary method for employees to receive the coverage. They don’t want to be involved at any level no matter how many degrees of separation the government provides.
Hobby Lobby is not likely to make that same argument because they already have said they will pay for contraception, just not those 4 varieties. I assume they have no “level of separation” argument so long as they don’t have to pay.
Who is right? The schools are right about there still being a fingerprint on anything that gets approved because they’ve filed objection paperwork. They are saying they should be permitted to buy a policy designed from the start in the way they want it without their having to approve a reduction of that policy.
Hobby Lobby must think that complicity isn’t the issue for them so long as they don’t have to directly engage in what they object to.
The case wasn’t even about contraceptives. It was about abortifacients.
Thanks for that clarification.
I’ve never understood how that was supposed to work. It seems the insurance companies would just charge higher fees to offset the cost of any contraception coverage the religious non-profits employees would use.
Yes I know. Without reading the entire decision it appears as though Alito used the opinion to also discuss the non profit accommodation, that does include all contraception non just the 4 that HL objected to.
He outright says the opinion assumes that the issue in the case, providing abortificants, does serve a compelling government interest. That appears at point (c) in the Syllabus (but NEVER trust the syllabus). Attributed to Alito and the majority:
Under RFRA, a Government action that imposes a substantial burden on religious exercise must serve a compelling government interest, and we assume that the HHS regulations satisfy this requirement.I don't take that as agreement with the premise, beyond "assume for the sake of argument." The majority's focus is on the "least restrictive means" requirement, and it is failure on that prong that results in the abortificant mandate being against RFRA.
That was my understanding as well. I think that Alito meant to clarify that in his opinion saying that employees will have to pay out of pocket for the cost of this contraceptive coverage in their plans and that insurance companies can’t just turn around and in the justice’s words “costshare”. I hope this is the case, but perhaps I am just in an optimistic mood today.
I agree that in a free market they would be forced to raise prices, but with the government guarantee of profitability, then who knows what they’d do?
Besides, their costs are already so high: premiums, copays, and deductibles, you gotta believe they have every option already covered and paid for.
I’m wondering how deductibles can be so high and copays so high and people think they’re getting this for free?
In short, I’m confused about everything about ObamaCare, EXCEPT that it doesn’t make sense.