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Catholic business wins minor victory against Obama mandate

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
January 3rd, 2013
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

There's a spot of hope for religious freedom following a decision by the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago to stop the government from enforcing its offensive contraceptive and abortifacient mandate in the face of religious freedom.

CHICAGO, IL (Catholic Online) - Dozens of lawsuits have been filed to challenge the Obamacare mandate that says employers must pay for employee insurance plans that must provide, free of charge to the employee, contraceptives, sterilizations, and abortifacients.

The most recent decision involves the case of Cyril and Jane Korte, a Roman Catholic couple who own a construction firm and are seeking to avoid compliance with the edict, which they understand as a violation of their faith.

 The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in their favor on a split, 2 to 1 decision. The court said in its ruling that the government had not justified its "substantial burden" on religious freedom.

Edward White, a lawyer for the Korte family said "Business owners who are objecting to the mandate are not objecting to people using contraceptives, but that they have to arrange for and pay for it. The federal government shouldn't tell business owners they have to contract to buy what they see as immoral services and goods."

However, Judge Ilana Rovner dissented from her colleagues, claiming that the family was "multiple steps" removed from the offensive services because the decision did not involve them. The choices involved involve the doctor, patient, and insurance company, not the family.

However, what Rovner isn't recognizing is that money from the Korte's pocket would be financing all such activity.

The favorable ruling comes just days after Supreme Court Justice, Sonia Sotomayor ruled against granting an injunction to David and Barbara Green, an evangelical couple who owns Hobby Lobby, a successful arts and crafts chain that they managed consistent with Christian principles.

Without the injunction, Hobby Lobby is subject to $1.3 million in daily fines, which began accruing Tuesday.

The debate threatens to divide the nation, which by and large supports religious freedom against the Obama administration which favors free contraceptives, sterilizations, and abortifacients on demand, as part of its sweeping healthcare initiative. Critics have pointed out that services which prevent life and cause death should not be labeled "healthcare."

As of Tuesday, fines have begun accruing for businesses that refuse to comply with Obama's edict. If Obama wins, the fines alone could sink a number of religious organizations in a single stroke.

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