Democrats Propose Bill to Overturn Hobby Lobby Ruling

Image: Democrats Propose Bill to Overturn Hobby Lobby Ruling Sen. Patty Murray

Wednesday, 09 Jul 2014 06:45 AM

By Elliot Jager

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Democratic lawmakers in the Senate are crafting legislation that would override the June 30th Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Supreme Court ruling, The New York Times reported.

In their 5-4 decision, the court held that the 1993 Religious Freedom Restoration Act applied to privately owned for-profit corporations and that they could not be compelled to provide contraceptive healthcare coverage for female employees.

The Democrats' bill would expressly require such companies to cover contraceptives under the Affordable Care Act. Democrats in the House are drafting their own version of the bill.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada said he wanted to use the issue against Republicans in the November elections.

"The one thing we're going to do during this work period, sooner rather than later, is to ensure that women's lives are not determined by virtue of five white men," Reid said. "This Hobby Lobby decision is outrageous, and we're going to do something about it. People are going to have to walk down here and vote, and if they vote with the five men on the Supreme Court, I think they're going to be treated unfavorably come November with the elections."

Washington Democratic Senator Patty Murray said, "Your health care decisions are not your boss's business. Since the Supreme Court decided it will not protect women's access to health care, I will," the Times reported.

The narrowly crafted bill does not alter the Religious Freedom Restoration Act as it applies to churches or nonprofit religious organizations.

Referring to the Hobby Lobby legislation, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said it would be easier to pass pressing legislation in July "if we cut out the show votes and didn't eat up time trying to score points for the fall election," Roll Call  reported.

Reid's effort is part of a strategy promoted by Planned Parenthood and Emily's List that portrays Republicans as engaged in a "war on women," according to Breitbart.

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