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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Six Lawsuits Now Filed Against Obama's HHS Mandate

By Susan Duclos

Heritage reports that two more lawsuits have been filed against the Obama administration over Obamacare's HHS mandate, by religiously affiliated organizations, added to the previous filed brings the total up to six.

That is not counting the dozen plus attorney generals for a variety of states that have already indicated they too will be filing court challenges against the so-called Contraception mandate that also includes forcing religious groups to offer insurance that covers sterilization and abortion induing drugs to their members.

Today, Geneva College, a private institution in Pennsylvania associated with the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America, held a press conference announcing it has filed a lawsuit against the Obama Administration over the mandate’s infringement on religious liberty.

The college takes issue with the mandate’s requirement to provide health insurance coverage of drugs like Plan B and ella, which can sometimes cause abortions in early pregnancy, at no cost to the insured. To effectively subsidize chemical abortions violates the college’s deeply held moral and religious beliefs and runs roughshod over the institution’s religious liberty and conscience rights.

“The government shouldn’t be able to force anyone to buy or sell insurance that subsidizes morally objectionable treatments,” said Geneva College President Ken Smith.

While the lawsuits filed this week focus on the mandate’s threat to religious freedom, the violations of liberty enabled by Obamacare’s unprecedented federal overreach could extend far beyond religious institutions.

“People of faith shouldn’t be punished by the state for following that faith in making decisions for themselves or their organizations,” said Greg Baylor, senior counsel at ADF. “Every American should know that a government with the power to do this to anyone can do this—and worse—to everyone.”

The Alliance Defense Fund also filed suit against the Obama Administration over the weekend on behalf of Louisiana College, a small Southern Baptist school located in the middle of the state. Like Geneva College and many others, Louisiana College holds deep moral objections to abortion and cannot in good conscience subsidize health insurance coverage of drugs that can end a pregnancy.

Read the rest over at Heritage.

Louisiana College press release below:

ADF, Louisiana College challenge Obama mandate
February 20th, 2012

Federal lawsuit challenges Obama administration’s latest attack on religious freedom

ALEXANDRIA, La. — Alliance Defense Fund attorneys filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of Louisiana College Saturday against the Obama administration. The lawsuit challenges the administration’s unconstitutional mandate that religious employers provide abortifacients, sterilization, and contraception at no cost to employees regardless of religious or moral objections.

“People of faith shouldn’t be punished by the government for following their beliefs when making decisions for themselves or their organizations,” said ADF Senior Counsel Kevin Theriot. “The Obama administration invented a fake ‘right’ to get ‘free’ abortion pills and sterilization and elevated it above real freedoms protected by the First Amendment. This calculated and intentional attempt to eradicate constitutional protections should terrify every freedom-loving American.”

“The Obama administration has purposely transformed a non-existent problem–access to contraception–into a constitutional crisis,” said ADF-allied attorney and co-counsel Mike Johnson, dean of Louisiana College’s Pressler School of Law. “This mandate offers no choice; Americans either comply and abandon their convictions or resist and be punished.”

President Obama held a press conference on Feb. 10 to offer a “compromise” under which some religious non-profit organizations would not have to comply with the mandate. Instead, the employer’s insurer would be required to offer the employer’s employees the same coverage at no charge. The “compromise”; however, does not exist in the rules or guidance Obama issued on Feb. 10, and the administration is not required to formally propose it.

Theriot explained that even if the proposed change did exist and had coherent boundaries, it would still require the employer to facilitate coverage by providing and paying for an objectionable plan, the costs of which would be passed on to the employers and/or employees via premiums.

“The time for silence is over,” said Louisiana College President Dr. Joe W. Aguillard. “Louisiana College will not sit by and allow this or any government to usurp our God-given religious freedoms and our time-honored Baptist heritage.”

The new lawsuit filed with the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana, Louisiana College v. Sebelius, argues that the mandate violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act as well as the First and Fifth amendments to the U.S. Constitution.

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Harry Reid's Response To Americans Worried About Obama's Attack On Religion: 'Calm Down'

Catholic League: Obama Legacy- 'The President That Brought The Culture War To Boil'

Religious Freedom Lawsuits Against Obama's s Abortion Drug And Contraception Mandate

Catholic Churches And Bishop of Marquette Punch Back At Obama's War On Religion

Catholic League Prepared To Fight Back Against Obama's War On Religion