Free Republic
Browse · Search
Religion
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Bishops to Obama: No dice
Hot Air | 2/11/2012 | Ed Morrissey

Posted on 02/11/2012 8:44:36 AM PST by nicmarlo

After a long day of supposed "accommodation" and discussion, the US Conference of Catholic Bishops took a close look at the supposed adjustment of the HHS mandate yesterday. Their conclusion? It represents no change at all, and the bishops will press for a “legislative solution” to Barack Obama’s mandate:

These changes require careful moral analysis, and moreover, appear subject to some measure of change. But we note at the outset that the lack of clear protection for key stakeholders—for self-insured religious employers; for religious and secular for-profit employers; for secular non-profit employers; for religious insurers; and for individuals—is unacceptable and must be corrected. And in the case where the employee and insurer agree to add the objectionable coverage, that coverage is still provided as a part of the objecting employer’s plan, financed in the same way as the rest of the coverage offered by the objecting employer. This, too, raises serious moral concerns.

We just received information about this proposal for the first time this morning; we were not consulted in advance. Some information we have is in writing and some is oral. We will, of course, continue to press for the greatest conscience protection we can secure from the Executive Branch. But stepping away from the particulars, we note that today’s proposal continues to involve needless government intrusion in the internal governance of religious institutions, and to threaten government coercion of religious people and groups to violate their most deeply held convictions. In a nation dedicated to religious liberty as its first and founding principle, we should not be limited to negotiating within these parameters. The only complete solution to this religious liberty problem is for HHS to rescind the mandate of these objectionable services.

We will therefore continue—with no less vigor, no less sense of urgency—our efforts to correct this problem through the other two branches of government. For example, we renew our call on Congress to pass, and the Administration to sign, the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act. And we renew our call to the Catholic faithful, and to all our fellow Americans, to join together in this effort to protect religious liberty and freedom of conscience for all.

The bishops note that the Obama administration never even bothered to contact them to discover what their true objections are, and what would satisfy them. The White House simply presumed to know church business better than the bishops and offered an “accommodation” that is anything but. In fact, that sounds a lot like the process that produced this mandate in the first place.

There are two broad objections in the USCCB statement. First, they are opposed to the mandate in general for moral reasons, but that alone would probably take the form of a teaching moment for the bishops rather than a call to action. They note that the overall mandate is “unsupported in the law and remains a grave moral concern,” and that they “cannot fail to reiterate this, even as so many would focus exclusively on the question of religious liberty.” But it’s that question that animates their activism, and it’s not just the fact that these religious organizations will end up paying for these products and services either directly or indirectly — which we’ll address momentarily. The mandate forces these organizations to facilitate the use of products and services that violate their religious doctrine, under penalty of government force. It’s exactly the type of government threat from which the First Amendment was written to protect religious practice — and that included the practice of religion outside of worship spaces.

Second, supporters of the Obama administration’s mandate claim that there won’t be any cost at all to pass along from this new policy, based on this analysis from HHS itself, included in last night’s QOTD:

The direct costs of providing contraception as part of a health insurance plan are very low and do not add more than approximately 0.5% to the premium costs per adult enrollee. Studies from three actuarial firms, Buck Consultants, PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC), and the Actuarial Research Corporation (ARC) have estimated the direct costs of providing contraception coverage.

However, as indicated by the empirical evidence described above, these direct estimated costs overstate the total premium cost of providing contraceptive coverage. When medical costs associated with unintended pregnancies are taken into account, including costs of prenatal care, pregnancy complications, and deliveries,the net effect on premiums is close to zero. One study author concluded, ‘The message is simple: regardless of payment mechanism or contraceptive method, contraception saves money.’

When indirect costs such as time away from work and productivity loss are considered, they further reduce the total cost to an employer.

At the same time, LifeNews quoted a Blue Cross study that showed the mandate would cost insurers — and their clients — almost $3 billion. So who’s right? It’s Blue Cross, and here’s why. Blue Cross estimated what the actual costs for providing the mandated products and services would be, while HHS projected estimates of long-term savings. In truth, no one is really sure whether those long-term savings will come to pass, but what we do know is that costs will rise immediately as insurers have to pay for the contraceptives and abortifacients for which they will get no cost-sharing from the women who use them. When those costs go up in the short term, so will premiums. If the long-term savings that HHS predicts do come to pass, all it will do will be to avoid premium hikes far down the road, but the initial impact will force insurers to raise premiums to cover these costs — and that means the religious organizations that have to pay more to cover the costs of the mandate. So yes indeed, they will have to pay for contraceptives and abortifacients despite the shell game announced by the White House yesterday.

The Obama administration’s “accommodation” was nothing more than a smoke screen intended to get rid of a bad political problem. The bishops aren't going to let them get away with it, and that means that Obama will still have religious organizations — and not just Catholics — demanding an end to the mandate and forcing a fight over religious liberty. Don’t expect it to go on for long, because this will prove disastrous to Obama’s political support in the fall if left in its current status. I'd give it a week, perhaps less, before we see a real climbdown.


TOPICS: Apologetics; Moral Issues; Religion & Politics
KEYWORDS: catholic; contraceptionmandate; firstamendment; obamacare; waronreligion

1 posted on 02/11/2012 8:44:46 AM PST by nicmarlo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: nicmarlo
They note that the overall mandate is “unsupported in the law and remains a grave moral concern,” and that they “cannot fail to reiterate this, even as so many would focus exclusively on the question of religious liberty.” But it’s that question that animates their activism, and it’s not just the fact that these religious organizations will end up paying for these products and services either directly or indirectly — which we’ll address momentarily. The mandate forces these organizations to facilitate the use of products and services that violate their religious doctrine, under penalty of government force. It’s exactly the type of government threat from which the First Amendment was written to protect religious practice — and that included the practice of religion outside of worship spaces.
Absolutely agree.
2 posted on 02/11/2012 8:45:39 AM PST by nicmarlo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: nicmarlo
Not only the US Bishops but the Pope has weighed in this morning and the official statement makes certain that any US Catholic Bishop or Priest that may have gone squishy, was given firm direction.

obummer and more important, his wymen handlers, have stepped on their collective penises {both real, transplanted and strap-attached} using the ones steel spiked golf shoes.

The wiggle room that they thought they had is now covered with road salt, and the slime is drying out and the worms are dying. A message to the obummer white hut staff; Worms, ESAD.

3 posted on 02/11/2012 8:55:08 AM PST by USS Alaska (Nuke The Terrorist Savages)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

most employers already provide birth control in health care plans. I think the only new Obama add-on is the no copay.

Insurers will be reaching out and giving it away as a “free gift”. it’s a side deal and a seperate contract.


4 posted on 02/11/2012 8:56:43 AM PST by snowstorm12
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: snowstorm12

Some elderly nun needs to come out and give Obama a good stiff RAP over the hands with a RULER!! Just like the good old days ...


5 posted on 02/11/2012 9:01:59 AM PST by LibsRJerks
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: nicmarlo

good to see not everyone out there is falling for this community organizer kenyan’s life opinions.


6 posted on 02/11/2012 9:03:15 AM PST by television is just wrong
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: USS Alaska

There is one important error in your post that needs correcting...

No way does Obama wear steel spike on the links.


7 posted on 02/11/2012 9:10:16 AM PST by Triple (Socialism denies people the right to the fruits of their labor, and is as abhorrent as slavery)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: snowstorm12

No, employers with RELIGIOUS objections do not provide these in their employees insurance plans.

That is the religious freedom issue.

In addition, where does Obama have the authority to order insurance companies to provide these free of charge or otherwise to workers at religion based institutions?

Where does he have the actual Constituional authority to mandate what insurance companies offer, period?

He CLAIMS it under Obamacare.

It certainly isn’t to be found in the Constitution.

The Founders are spinning in their graves.


8 posted on 02/11/2012 9:10:24 AM PST by txrangerette ("HOLD TO THE TRUTH...SPEAK WITHOUT FEAR" - Glenn Beck)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: USS Alaska
Not only the US Bishops but the Pope has weighed in this morning and the official statement makes certain that any US Catholic Bishop or Priest that may have gone squishy, was given firm direction.

cool!!!

9 posted on 02/11/2012 9:12:04 AM PST by nicmarlo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: television is just wrong

I agree. I’m glad to see that the Bishops (and now I hear the Pope) are strongly taking issue with this dictator-in-chief.


10 posted on 02/11/2012 9:13:23 AM PST by nicmarlo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: USS Alaska

Do you have a link handy to the Pope’s statements???


11 posted on 02/11/2012 9:16:55 AM PST by nicmarlo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: Triple

Too true. Hate those plastic things. Still use the real cleats for lawn-mowing. They’re great on the hills.


12 posted on 02/11/2012 10:03:06 AM PST by Mach9
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: nicmarlo

**At the same time, LifeNews quoted a Blue Cross study that showed the mandate would cost insurers — and their clients — almost $3 billion. So who’s right? It’s Blue Cross,**

So does everyone want to pay a higher health insurance premium so that MORE babies can be KILLED?

I don’t!


13 posted on 02/11/2012 10:07:07 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: snowstorm12

Apparently, you may not be aware of the details involving employer / employee / insurance provider relationships.

1. Catholic/religious institutions very commonly utilize faith based insurance companies that maintain the same exact practices that the religious entities upholds, and as such, fall under the same conscience clause exemption status.

2. In many cases, as with non-501c3 religious non-profits, the insurance premium is significantly subsidized and as such would force these exempted institutions into paying for services which are deemed immoral.

This is why our Catholic Bishops and other religious leaders have repudiated Obama’s ridiculous “accomodation” attempt.

For someone who thought he knew enough about private health insurance to the point of trying to nationalize it, Obama and his HHS head are completely in over their heads, especially if they think they can dismantle the moral authority of our religious institutions. Typical communist trash.


14 posted on 02/11/2012 10:13:27 AM PST by motoman
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: Triple
There is one important error in your post that needs correcting...

No way does Obama wear steel spike on the links.

You are correct, but he does use them for his sex trysts.

Can you imagine obummer having se..... never mind, it will make you ill.

15 posted on 02/11/2012 10:27:11 AM PST by USS Alaska (Nuke The Terrorist Savages)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: USS Alaska
Bishops to Obama: No dice
Paul VI: “danger of this power passing into the hands of those public authorities ...”
Michael Moore Goes On Anti-Catholic Twitter Rant, Distorts Contraception Debate
Another Catholic college vows it will ‘not violate conscience’ on Obama mandate
Lutherans join chorus of voices slamming HHS contraceptive mandate
The Obama HHS 'Compromise' Switches the Tiger for the Lion (Not all Catholics buying Obama's bull)
Hannity on now with Priests, Pastors and Rabbis. Please watch

EDITORIAL: Obama’s free abortion pills
U.S. bishops ‘express concerns’ about Obama mandate ‘accommodation’
What Compromise? This Policy Leaves Religious Liberty in Peril and Planned Parenthood Smiling (Albert Mohler Opinion)
Bishops Renew Call To Legislative Action On Religious Liberty
Southern Baptist leader: Obama gave Christians ‘the dismissive back’ of his hand
Obama's Act of Tyranny
Bishops Were Prepared for Battle Over Birth Control Coverage
'Accounting gimmick' -- Obama compromise still threatens religious liberty, leaders say
Bishops ‘concerned’ over reworded mandate; other Catholic leaders slam as ‘insult to injury’
Obama Bows to Pressure, but His Religious 'Accommodation' Even Worse

Don't Be Deceived! Evil Obama Policy Now Even MORE Evil!
Obama’s Contraceptive 'Compromise' Doesn't Pass the Smell Test ("It doesn't change a thing")
Compromise or Accommodation, it’s still unacceptable. (updated from Catholic Vote)
Pres. Obama’s “Plan B” compromise, Sr. Keehan, and the Magisterium of Nuns
Land Says Obama Mandate Most Anti-Catholic Government Action in 150 Years
Motive, Means and Opportunity: Obama’s Assault on Catholics
(Exempt Catholics) Joe Biden, Bill Daley warned of contraceptive backlash
(Tim) Thomas makes second political statement (Stands With Catholics)
Southern Baptist leader: If Obama mandate isn’t changed, Christians will go to jail
Over 150 congressional leaders demand repeal of HHS mandate

Boehner vows to overturn Obama’s birth control coverage rule
Boehner: Congress to overturn birth control policy if Obama does not reverse course
O'Brien says Archdiocese of Baltimore won't offer birth control coverage
Archbishop of San Francisco says Obama ruling strikes at religious freedom
How Obama Lost the Catholic Vote
‘I am going to stick with fellow Catholics’ in Pres. Obama’s war on Catholics. Wherein Fr. Z rants.
Unholy War
Six Things Everyone Should Know about the HHS Mandate
Santorum: Obama Hostile to Christians
Understanding Oppostion to the HHS Mandate (Part 1): Why the Church Won’t Pay for Contracept

The Bishops Chickens Coming Home to Roost.
65 Orthodox Church bishops call on Obama to ‘rescind’ the ‘unjust’ contraception mandate
Doug Kmiec Writes Obama: 'Friendship Will Not Permit Me to Disregard Duty to Faith and Country'
Catholic Outcry Over Obama Administration's Birth Control Decision Could Factor In Presidential Race
Standing with the Bishops [Catholic Caucus]
Updated: *167* Bishops (More Than 90% of Dioceses) Have Spoken Out Against Obama/HHS Mandate
Outrage!… Military Tells Chaplains What They Can and Can’t Say About HHS/ObamaAssault on Religion
Updated: *153* Bishops (Over 80% of Dioceses) Have Spoken Out Against Obama/HHS Mandate
An Affront Catholics Agree On [Liberal and Conservative Catholics Against Obama Mandate]
Army Silenced Chaplains Last Sunday

Catholic Military Archdiocese & Chaplains interfered with last Sunday by Pres. Obama’s Admin
The Anti-Catholic President v. the Catholic Bishops
Sen. Rubio introduces bill to reverse Obama birth control mandate
Churches balk at birth control rule - Catholics won’t comply, Bishop Kevin Rhoades says
Protestants and Jews declare to White House: We stand with Catholics
Checking the Air Outside [Bp. Zubik's follow up to Obama's “To Hell with You”]
Mohler [Southern Baptist] Says Insurance Mandate Not Just 'Catholic' Issue
An Open Letter to President Barack Obama Concerning Recent Tyranny (With Pictures!)
Lincoln bishop: prepare for 'suffering' under HHS mandate
Bishop David Zubik confronts Obama
Obama’s ‘war on the church’

Pope hits out at 'radical secularism'
‘We Will Not Comply’: Catholic Leaders Distribute Letter Slamming Obama Admin Contraceptive Mandate
‘We Will Not Comply’: Catholic Leaders Distribute Letter Slamming Obama Admin Contraceptive Mandate
Bruskewitz: Fight Insurance Ruling [Sebelius a "bitter, fallen away Catholic"]
Letter from Archbishop John G. Vlazny on the matter of freedom of conscience and decisions by HHS
Bishop Olmsted's Letter to Catholics [Catholic Caucus]
Liberty for the Amish & Quakers but not Catholics. . .
Contraception mandate prompts Peoria bishop to instate St. Michael Prayer (Catholic Caucus)
Phoenix bishop (Olmstead): defy feds on birth control
A letter from Archbishop Dennis M. Schnurr concerning HHS edict

Speak honestly: abortion is ‘the killing of tiny human beings in the womb’ – Denver bishop
Bishop [Daniel Jenky] Blasts Secularist Intolerance, Calls For ‘Assertive Action’ to Defend Church
(Pittsburgh Bishop Zubik comments:) HHS delays rule on contraceptive coverage
Dolan: Natural law, not religious preference, dictates all life sacred
Religious leaders blast HHS over contraception mandate
Mandated Contraception, Sterilization: Caesar Demands Church Violate Conscience
OBAMA’S CONTEMPT FOR RELIGIOUS LIBERTY (mandates coverage of sterilization & contraception)
Implications of Obama Admin move to force Cath hospitals to provide contraception and sterilizations
Catholic doctors’ group launches petition against contraception mandate
Contraception mandate tramples religious freedom, US bishops say

16 posted on 02/11/2012 10:31:29 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: nicmarlo
Only a bunch of fascists are so anxious to attack the Christianity in general and the Catholic Church in particular that they'd do something this stupid prior to an election.
Since Barry is a narcissistic madman stroking his own ego was way more important than political calculations, though, and Barry no doubt expected the majority of Catholics to be Catholic In Name Only like the head of HHS is. He was looking forward to having Catholics applaud him and ignore Church teaching against contraception and abortion, as well as planning to gloat over how many more Catholics agree with him than with the Pope.

He and the HHS folks also probably figured the Catholic Church would pay fines for their employees rather than go along with the mandate and those fines would make Obamacare look like a more financially sound endeavor than RomneyCare which relies on tons of Federal money.

One of the most amazing things, to me at least, about this whole attack on the Constitution is that some local Methodists we are harping on how silly the Catholic Church is to make an issue of this. They just don't see this as a major violation of the First Amendment no matter how you explain it to them. And an Independent Baptist neighbor said, "It's just them Catholics, so what do I care?". Has has this country become a nation of shallow morons or what?

Next Barry will establish a State Religion and say it's not really a State Religion, just the religion the State mandates everyone become a member of or not worship.

17 posted on 02/11/2012 10:33:09 AM PST by Rashputin (Obama stark, raving, mad, and even his security people know it.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: nicmarlo
Do you have a link handy to the Pope’s statements??

I thought it was on drudge but it's not. I looked it up on google and shazaam, there is NO reference to it.

Ya think that only the msm buries news, google is the worst.

It is somewhere in the ether, but I can't find it.

18 posted on 02/11/2012 10:34:12 AM PST by USS Alaska (Nuke The Terrorist Savages)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: Rashputin

Commies have taken over the national Methodist Church and many local Methodist churches. They want abortion, birth control and tyranny to impose equal outcomes. They are worse than Obama. Ditto for The Episcopal Church. One of its Lesbian priests claims an abortion is a blessing. Yes. Imagine that absurdity. Thankfully, Evangelicals are opposed to this. The Southern Baptists are also fighting it tooth and nail.


19 posted on 02/11/2012 10:39:10 AM PST by WashingtonSource
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: nicmarlo

Based on this, no Christians should vote for 0bama in 2012 - only Xtians.


20 posted on 02/11/2012 11:19:26 AM PST by Post Toasties (Leftists give insanity a bad name. 0bama: Four years of failure and fingerpointing.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: USS Alaska
Does this help?

Last week, Pope Benedict XVI told visiting U.S. bishops that core values of American culture are being threatened by "radical secularism." In an apparent reference to the Health and Human Services' ruling, the Pope said many bishops had told him of "concerted efforts" against "the right of conscientious objection ... to cooperation in intrinsically evil practices."

http://insurancenewsnet.com/article.aspx?id=327807&type=newswires

21 posted on 02/11/2012 5:24:53 PM PST by Sons of Union Vets (No taxation without representation!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: Rashputin
One of the most amazing things, to me at least, about this whole attack on the Constitution is that some local Methodists we are harping on how silly the Catholic Church is to make an issue of this. They just don't see this as a major violation of the First Amendment no matter how you explain it to them. And an Independent Baptist neighbor said, "It's just them Catholics, so what do I care?".
For whom the bell tolls a poem (No man is an island) by John Donne

No man is an island,
Entire of itself.
Each is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thine own
Or of thine friend's were.
Each man's death diminishes me,
For I am involved in mankind.
Therefore, send not to know
For whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for thee.

Has has this country become a nation of shallow morons or what?
They are willing to go on record as not having an objection to abortion? And no sympathy even for Protestants who do?

22 posted on 02/11/2012 5:56:41 PM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (DRAFT PALIN)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Religion
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson