January 12, 2016
When the President tries to hail ObamaCare as a success in tonight's address, the evidence of its failure will literally be staring him in the face. In one of the many interesting subplots to the State of the Union, the Little Sisters of the Poor, the same nuns suing the administration for the right not to provide health care that violates their conscience, will be in the audience as guests of Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.). Their appearance comes the same week as 207 Republican members of Congress (including Ryan) filed friend-of-the-court brief on behalf of the Little Sisters in one of the highest profile challenges of the law.
"The law sets up an impossible choice for these organizations," said Rep. Diane Black (R-Tenn.), whose Health Care Conscience Rights Act would stop attacks like this one, deny their deeply-held beliefs and provide coverage for drugs they deem to be morally objectionable, or face crippling financial penalties from the very government that is supposed to protect their religious liberty. This is a pivotal moment for religious freedom, and I am honored to lend my voice and my prayers to the growing chorus calling on the Supreme Court to rectify this crisis."
The clash between the administration and these nuns has been one of the most embarrassing fallouts from this law, as people on both sides of the political spectrum fail to see why HHS is demanding that even Little Sisters should have to pay for birth control. While members of Congress show whose side they're on, FRC and several conservative organizations did the same, filing their own brief on the nuns' behalf yesterday. As our own Travis Weber, Director of the Center for Religious Liberty, pointed out, "It's incredibly important that FRC and other faith-based organizations make their voices heard before the Supreme Court and to the Obama administration's lawyers arguing against the religious freedom of the nonprofits before the Court. If this type of government overreach and intrusive power grab into the inner workings of organizations of private citizens goes unchecked, we will find that the freedom we take for granted today will diminish to the point of evaporation."
Together with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, World Vision, Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities, Thomas More Society, and others, we'll continue to fight for every American to break free of the government's suffocating grip and win back the right to opt out of providing coverage that violates their faith.
Tony Perkins' Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.