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Supreme Court Chooses Religious Freedom Over Obamacare in Benchmark Hobby Lobby Case


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The Supreme Court handed down their decision this morning in the case concerning religious freedom brought by arts-and-crafts store Hobby Lobby.

In the 5-4 ruling, the court sided with Hobby Lobby in its effort to prevent the Affordable Care Act from mandating that the company cover emergency contraceptives Plan B and ella, as well as intrauterine devices, to female employees; it will still provide most other forms of birth control to its employees.

The arts-and-crafts store argued that that requirement impeded its religious freedom.

According to the SCOTUS live blog, the court finds that closely-held corporations cannot be required to provide contraception coverage. Furthermore:

The Court says that the government has failed to show that the mandate is the least restrictive means of advancing its interest in guaranteeing cost-free access to birth control.

 

It does not provide a shield for employers who might cloak illegal discrimination as a religious practice.

This decision strikes a blow to the Obama Administration's signature legislation, taking away a significant portion of the mandate.

Hobby Lobby argued that the requirement was in direct violation to the 1993 Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which prevents the government from substantially burdening a person's exercise of religion.

This is the first time the Court has ruled in favor of a for-profit company presenting a case to defend religious freedom.

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