Despite campaigning on religious freedom, the Little Sisters of the Poor are still fighting against the Obamacare birth control mandate.
Has the Trump White House merely forgotten about the Little Sisters of the Poor or is there something more sinister going on? Whatever has happened, the result is that the Little Sisters of the Poor are still defending themselves in court for their freedom of conscience.
Donald Trump has been acting as one of the most pro-life Republican Presidents we have had. It would be horrible if he planned to change his record on the issue. I can only wonder if the agencies are occupied by members of the pro-death “deep state” who are part of “the resistance” to Trump’s agenda and authority.
The Daily Caller reports, “DOJ Lawyers Still Battling Christians Over Obamacare Contraception Mandate.”
DOJ lawyers have continued to keep alive a slew of cases appealing a 2014 district court ruling that granted an injunction from the mandate to several Catholic organizations. The Supreme Court vacated an appeals court ruling against The Little Sisters of the Poor and similar organizations in 2016, sending the cases back to the lower courts. Many religious freedom advocates expected that the Trump administration, which has vowed to protect The Little Sisters and other organizations burdened by the contraceptive mandate, would drop the legal campaign against the religious organizations. But more than six months into the Trump era, the legal fights are still alive.
President Trump signed an executive order in early May, directing the Secretaries of Health and Human Services, Labor and Treasury to “consider issuing amended regulations, consistent with applicable law, to address conscience-based objections to the preventive-care mandate” in Obamacare. HHS Secretary Tom Price said the executive order would allow the HHS to “safeguard the deeply held religious beliefs of Americans who provide health insurance to their employees.”
In response to this order, the agencies came up with a draft rule.
But more than two months after the agencies drafted the rule, they have yet to actually publish or promulgate any such rule. DOJ lawyers are using the lack of action to extend their years-long legal battles with religious objectors to the mandate. DOJ lawyers have asked for — and received — repeated 60-day extensions from the 10th Circuit, court filings show.
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