Tags: obamacare | baptist | contraception | injunction

Injunction Granted in Southern Baptist Contraception Case

Sunday, 22 Dec 2013 09:21 AM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

A federal judge in Oklahoma City has granted an injunction to block an Obamacare mandate that religion-based groups provide insurance allowing access to the morning after pill and other contraceptives.

Friday's preliminary injunction came in favor of a class-action lawsuit that 187 ministries filed in October, reports Fox News. The group insurance provides benefits through GuideStone Financial Resources, which operates through the Southern Baptist Convention.

Urgent: Do You Approve Or Disapprove of President Obama's Job Performance? Vote Now in Urgent Poll

The ministries objected to providing four of 20 different contraceptives approved by the Food and Drug Administration, including both the morning-after and week-after pills, which opponents believe may cause early abortions.

"This is an overwhelming victory for GuideStone and the nearly 200 plaintiffs in this class-action lawsuit," said Adele Keim, a lawyer for GuideStone and the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which helped represent the ministries. "Today’s ruling will allow hundreds of Baptist ministries to continue preaching the Gospel and serving the poor … without laboring under the threat of massive fines."

The insurance groups must comply with other Obamacare regulations, the ruling states, but the injunction prevents the government from enforcing the mandate as the suit continues, and will help the religious groups avoid massive fines.

Federal Judge Timothy DeGiusti said the ministries have the right to challenge the contraceptive mandate, ruling an injunction was needed to keep the government from forcing the provision on them.

Friday's ruling came just days after a New York judge ruled that non-exempt religious groups are not bound by the Affordable Care Act's mandate requiring coverage for contraceptives and other birth control options.

In the ruling, Brooklyn Federal Court Judge Brian Cogan barred the government from enforcing the mandate against Catholic Health Care System, Catholic Health Services of Long Island, Cardinal Spellman High School and Monsignor Farrell High School.

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York and the health and educational groups had challenged the mandate on religious freedom grounds. The federal government later issued a rule that exempted the archdiocese, but said schools and health-care affiliates were still subject to the law, which takes effect Jan. 1.

Catholic Health Services of Long Island, the largest of the groups, oversees six hospitals, three nursing homes and a hospice service and has a health plan covering almost 25,000 people.

In the Oklahoma case, DeGiusti referred repeatedly to a lawsuit filed by Oklahoma City-based arts and crafts chain Hobby Lobby.

In that lawsuit, Hobby Lobby's owner, a Christian family, said the morning after pill mandate would violate their beliefs. However, had their insurance not given access to the drug, the company could have faced fines of up to $1.3 million daily.

Urgent: Do You Approve Or Disapprove of President Obama's Job Performance? Vote Now in Urgent Poll

"Here, as in Hobby Lobby, the court finds that plaintiffs have made a threshold showing of a substantial burden, and, thus, a likelihood of success," DiGiusti's ruling states.
Related stories:

© 2015 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

AG Nominee Gets 2 GOP Endorsements After Witnesses Attack DOJ

Thursday, 29 Jan 2015 23:33 PM

Two Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee endorsed Loretta Lynch's nomination as attorney general, but not befor . . .

US-Led Airstrikes Slam ISIS Targets in Syria and Iraq

Thursday, 29 Jan 2015 22:20 PM

The United States and coalition partners launched six airstrikes against Islamic State (ISIS) targets in Syria and 12 mo . . .

Rep. Peter King: 9/11 Lesson Is Ex-Gitmo Detainees Threat to US

Thursday, 29 Jan 2015 21:53 PM

Rep. Peter King says President Barack Obama should remember the lessons of 9/11 and stop releasing detainees from the mi . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved