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  • Liberty-Crushing HHS Mandate Takes Effect August 1

    Tomorrow, the government’s liberty-crushing mandate that has elicited widespread outcry and led a federal judge to grant a preliminary injunction against the rule for a for-profit business will officially take effect.

    On August 1, Obamacare’s preventive health services mandate will be implemented, and with it the Health and Human Services (HHS) anti-conscience mandate. After Wednesday, nearly all employers will be forced, at the beginning of their next health plan year, to pay for coverage of abortion-inducing drugs, contraception, and sterilization—regardless of moral or religious objections.

    Despite the false assurances of the Obama Administration and supporters of the mandate, few employers will ultimately escape the rule’s coercive requirements.

    The offensively narrow religious exemption included in the mandate effectively covers only formal houses of worship, leaving countless organizations—from schools and hospitals to soup kitchens—completely unprotected. Insinuating that faith should remain behind closed doors, not influencing or motivating the care for others, this mandate assaults the right to the free exercise of religion.

    Among the many employers who do not meet the Administration’s narrow religious exemption, some may be able to get a one-year reprieve from the HHS mandate under the Administration’s “temporary safe-harbor” provision. Non-profit religious employers are eligible for the safe harbor only if they meet the Administration’s four-part test.

    Even then, the temporary safe harbor only delays the inevitable, merely giving religious employers an extra 12 months to silence their consciences and get in line with the government’s mandate. Many religious employers and all for-profit employers will not qualify for the safe harbor and will be subject to the HHS mandate as of August 1, 2012.

    The bottom line: Tomorrow, the stifling effects of the Administration’s attack on religious liberty will begin to be felt, with for-profit businesses and non-exempt religious organizations as the first of many casualties.

    For the many non-exempt employers, August 1 signals the beginning of a season of impossible decisions. After tomorrow, at the renewal of their health plan years, the HHS mandate will force employers into an untenable choice: violate their deeply held beliefs or forfeit the provision of health insurance altogether and risk steep fines.

    Who are these victims of Obamacare’s trampling on faith? Family business owners who are producing jobs and growing the economy, Catholic social organizations that provide invaluable services to their communities, and evangelical colleges and universities educating the next generation, to name just a few.

    Over the past year, the Obama Administration has forfeited numerous opportunities to protect the religious liberty of employers, refusing to rescind the mandate or expand its offensively narrow religious exemption. Instead, the Obama Administration has promised an unworkable, insufficient “accommodation” that neither has the force of law nor addresses the mandate’s underlying assault on liberty.

    For these reasons and more, almost 60 organizations have joined more than 20 lawsuits against the HHS mandate, seeking from U.S. courts the protection of a constitutional freedom that the Obama Administration refuses to afford. If last week’s victory on behalf of a Colorado family-owned business is any indication, the Administration’s refusal to protect religious liberty will continue to have as much appeal in federal court as it does among the American people.

    Unfortunately, the HHS mandate is only an early warning sign of how one-size-fits-all health care requirement will trample on religious liberty as well as individual liberty. August 1 will only be the beginning of Obamacare’s rules that undermine constitutional freedoms.

    It should be a warning sign to Americans that one of the first parts of Obamacare to be implemented will force employers with religious and moral convictions to violate their consciences.

    To truly save employers from the coercive HHS mandate and others like it, the answer is to repeal Obamacare and replace it with health care reform that reduces costs, increases access, and leaves personal health care decisions where they belong—in the hands of the American people.

    Posted in Featured, Obamacare [slideshow_deploy]

    12 Responses to Liberty-Crushing HHS Mandate Takes Effect August 1

    1. SnoBurd says:

      O is still trying to get America to toe the Communist party line. That's exactly what this is, nothing more, nothing less. He must be voted out of office in November.

    2. Frank says:

      Forcing phony belief systems on employees just because it's the only lever of power you have… liberty?

    3. Dan says:

      So by the tea party logic, if you happen to be a catholic janitor working for the Christian scientists your bosses should be allowed to prohibit your health insurance from allowing life saving treatments?

    4. Dave Erhardt says:

      It truly is a sad day for religious liberty. The Constitution protects this liberty and this law violates this right. The Catholic hospitals will close down before they give out contraceptives or abortion producing drugs. Abortions and contraceptives are against the doctrines of the Catholic Church. If people want this, they can go other places. Let's hope that the next Congress and president stops Obamacare before it's too late.

    5. Ross in Florida says:

      I guess as a Christian believing in the sanctity of life, I am now a criminal in eyes of our government. I choose not to participate in criminal acts illegally made by the federal government in direct violation of the Constitution of the United States of America, specifically the First Amentment. The question begs; Where have all the Statesmans and defenders of the Constitution gone? Can they be found in the hall of congress? Or the federal benches thoughout the land? I cannot see them, I think I hear them….
      Finally I believe that the only activity the Federal Government should be engaged in is; first, guarding the shores and borders, regulate interstate commerce between states, and lastly stay the hell out our lives, off our properties, and our pockets. Other than being pay for "services rendered," anyother monies paid to any business or individuals by the government is "dole" including entitlement of any kind. Regretfully, I have seen this crisis coming for decades. Now it is here. Now what?

    6. Freedom says:

      We need civil disobedience NOW!

    7. Conscience, conscience!… Obama & Co. is starting to devour every bit of American liberty. It's up to US to allow or disallow this act of barbarism to happen. If you're a TRUE CHRISTIAN, LIBERTY-LOVING AMERICAN, think about this: Your faith is your sword. Along with your sword is your right of suffrage to eliminate the oppressors of the liberty our forefathers have fought very hard for. Election time is just around the corner… and the Obama & co. shall be banished!

    8. DM Brown says:

      This is truly dangerous and people need to wake up. Obama's really trying to transform America. He wants to destroy our Constitution. People please wake up because if we do not stop him in November, we will not recognize America. We cannot let him take away our liberties and rights!!!!

    9. While Cardinal Dolan is having a big meal with Obama at the Alfred Smith dinner, the flock is waiting to take orders from our "Church Militant' Shepards. God Help Us. JO

    10. @RoxyMtz2008 says:

      This is clearly a biased article. It seems as though The Heritage Network is more of a republican-based organization rather than a just a conservative source. I will now keep that in mind as I continue to cover information on this election and reading political material.

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