The Editorial Board of USA Today tore into the Obama Administration Monday over ObamaCare’s war against Catholics, specifically the Little Sisters of the Poor — a group of nuns who, thanks to the president’s contraception mandate, will either have to violate their religious conscience or face financial ruin.
While USA Today supports ObamaCare and the contraception mandate, when it comes to employers who share “religious bonds and convictions with a church,” the editorial board says the “administration should adopt the most expansive” exemption possible:
Although religiously affiliated non-profits do not have to supply birth control coverage themselves, they must sign a certification that allows their insurance companies to provide it instead. Some non-profits have acquiesced, but not the Little Sisters and others who argue that this makes them complicit in an act that violates a tenet of their faith. If the non-profits refuse to sign, they face ruinous fines — $4.5 million a year for just two of the Little Sisters’ 30 homes.
So far, the government is on a losing streak. In 19 of 20 cases, including the Little Sisters’, judges have granted preliminary relief to the non-profits, allowing them to press their claims. The administration should take the hint. …
None of this had to happen. Federal law has several constitutionally vetted religious exemptions. The administration should adopt the most expansive, such as the one that exempts employers who share “religious bonds and convictions with a church.” One of Obama’s most prominent Catholic supporters, John Jenkins, president of Notre Dame, urged the administration to do just that in 2011 when it was formulating its policy.
While it is certainly nice of USA Today to come out so strongly in favor of religious liberty, had the mainstream media done its job and vetted ObamaCare while it was being debated and passed, this simple act of meeting the most basic of journalistic responsibilities might have saved millions — Catholic employers and those who have and will lose their insurance — from all kinds of misery.
Hopefully, more in the elite media will take this stand and speak out. It is unconscionable and un-American for the federal government to force anyone — employers, businesses, individuals — into the terrible choice of violating their conscience, paying crippling fines, or closing down their business.
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