Support the Café

Search our Site

U. S. Catholic bishops want contraception exemptions in continuing resolution

U. S. Catholic bishops want contraception exemptions in continuing resolution

Think Progress is reporting that: “One week before House Republicans shut down the government in an effort to force President Obama to enact many of their preferred policies, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops wrote House members requesting that the government be shut down — and potentially that the nation be forced into default — unless religious employers were given a special right to deny birth control coverage to their employees.”

Cardinal Sean O’Malley and Archbishop William Lori don’t explicitly say call for a shutdown, but they write: “[w]e have already urged you to enact the Health Care Conscience Rights Act (H.R. 940/S. 1204). As Congress considers a Continuing Resolution and debt ceiling bill in the days to come, we reaffirm the vital importance of incorporating the policy of this bill into such ‘must-pass’ legislation.”

As Ian Millhiser writes:

The “Health Care Conscience Rights Act” permits religious employers to exclude any “‘item or service to which [they have] a moral or religious objection from the health insurance package offered to employees.

Shortly after the Obama Administration announced rules requiring most employers to provide birth control to their employees, the Bishops rebelled, offering an unusually expansive reading of the Constitution and of a federal religious liberty law to claim that these rules are invalid. Their letter demanding a shut down unless they get their way on birth control, however, is a major escalation from their previous position. It is one thing to request a carve out from a law you do not want to follow while the rest of the nation continues its business around you, but it’s another thing altogether to demand that the government shut down because you are unhappy with the current state of the law.


Café Comments?

Our comment policy requires that you use your real first and last names and provide an email address (your email will not be published). Comments that use non-PG rated language, include personal attacks, that are not provable as fact or that we deem in any way to be counter to our mission of fostering respectful dialogue will not be posted.

Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Nailed it, Gregory. [Just don’t lose too much blood in that nailing! ;-X]

JC Fisher

Gregory Orloff

So will my Jehovah’s Witness employer be able to deny me insurance coverage for a life-saving blood transfusion because his/her religion forbids them, even though mine does not? That’s were this logic (or lack thereof) seems to be leading…

Robin Garr

Pope Francis’ advice about priority on social justice has apparently been lost on them.

Ann Fontaine

oh great- they want to starve the children to get their way on a religious point of view

Support the Café
Past Posts

The Episcopal Café seeks to be an independent voice, reporting and reflecting on the Episcopal Church and the Anglican tradition.  The Café is not a platform of advocacy, but it does aim to tell the story of the church from the perspective of Progressive Christianity.  Our collective sympathy, as the Café, lies with the project of widening the circle of inclusion within the church and empowering all the baptized for the role to which they have been called as followers of Christ.

The opinions expressed at the Café are those of individual contributors, and, unless otherwise noted, should not be interpreted as official statements of a parish, diocese or other organization. The art and articles that appear here remain the property of their creators.

All Content  © 2017 Episcopal Café