September 1, 2015

March for Life Free From HHS’s Contraception Mandate

Leon’s decision is a strong and heartening defense of Liberty.

Conservatives have long argued that the contraception mandate in ObamaCare, which requires companies to provide coverage for abortion-inducing contraception despite anyone’s beliefs on the subject, violates the First Amendment’s guarantee of religious liberty. But Judge Richard J. Leon of the DC District Court gave us an argument for moral liberty — the freedom from coercion even if the state and citizen hold different moral codes. On Monday, Leon ruled that the March for Life, a staunchly pro-life organization yet one that is nonreligious, is free from the government’s demands that it buy insurance that covers abortion and contraception. Making exemptions to the ObamaCare rule only for churches and the like would be “regulatory favoritism” on the part of the government, Leon wrote. In its statement on the ruling, the group that represented March for Life, Alliance Defending Freedom, quoted Leon’s ruling: “If the purpose of the religious employer exemption is, as HHS states, to respect the anti-abortifacient tenets of an employment relationship, then it makes no rational sense-indeed, no sense whatsoever to deny March for Life that same respect.” As Hot Air’s Ed Morrissey notes, the dance isn’t over yet, as the Obama administration may take this fight to the Supreme Court. Still, Leon’s decision is a strong and heartening defense of Liberty.

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