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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

6/11/2013 (10 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

HHS mandate exemption expires on August 1.

August 1 will be D-Day for religious organizations and their immediate auxiliaries as the Health and Human Services contraception mandate exemption expires. Beginning on that day, religious organizations and employers, as well as their employees, will have to violate their conscience in order to comply with the law, or pay stiff fines enforced by the IRS.

The IRS intends to make it very difficult to comply with your conscience.

The IRS intends to make it very difficult to comply with your conscience.

Article Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

6/11/2013 (10 months ago)

Published in Politics & Policy

Keywords: Contraception mandate, war on women, Health and Human Services, edict, contraception, IRS, enforcement, Obamacare, Religious exemption


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - On August 1 the exemption that has provided religious organizations relief under the Health and Human Services edict, will expire. In 2010, a panel created by President Obama recommended that all insurance policies provided by employers should cover contraception, sterilization, and abortifacients free of charge to women. The panel cited the high cost of these drugs, which can sometimes be as much as a few dollars per dose.

Never mind the fact that these drugs are some of the cheapest on the market and that reproductive decisions can be made for free because they are first and foremost behavior-based decisions.

In spite of this, employers who do not provide free contraceptives and abortifacients to their employees will face fines of up to $100 per day.

The law does provide a very narrow exemption for religious organizations and their auxiliaries, however to obtain such an exemption an organization will be required to complete byzantine IRS forms and it will be subjected to intense IRS scrutiny. The IRS at its sole discretion may determine whether or not an organization qualifies for an exemption.

Should be no problem, right?

A series of lawsuits have already been brought against the Health and Human Services mandate, the largest being that spearheaded by Hobby Lobby, an arts and crafts chain run by conservative Christian owners. Hobby Lobby faces potential fines of up to $1.3 million for its refusal to comply with the mandate.

After August 1, a new flurry of lawsuits is expected.

Meanwhile, any organization that requires an exemption to the law will need to complete meticulous paperwork that will be scrutinized by IRS officials to determine whether or not an exemption is warranted.

Given recent scandals involving the IRS, and their lack of impartiality, plan to have the IRS oversee compliance is raising concern.

The IRS has already demonstrated that it is incapable of behaving in an impartial fashion.

Of course, any employer who seeks an exemption or who files a lawsuit, or simply refuses to comply, will be deemed by the left as waging a war on women. It is ironic that organizations whose only desire is to preserve the lives of baby girls in the womb, as well as boys, should be accused of waging a war. And when it is further considered that a full half of all the victims of abortion are baby girls (future women) it seems curious that social conservatives and the religious are cast as the ones fighting a war on women.

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Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for April 2014
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