This case isn’t about ensuring all Americans can access contraception. The Administration has already exempted many secular corporations like Exxon and Pepsi, cities like New York, and the military family plan from including free contraception and non-surgical abortion in their healthcare plans. 1 in 3 Americans are not even covered by the mandate HHS is fighting so hard to force the Little Sisters of the Poor to follow. HHS could much better meet its goal of providing access to contraception if it provided it as an add-on in the healthcare exchange for all women instead of fighting so hard to force the Little Sisters to offer it through their religiously-protected health plan.
The Little Sisters Trusted President Obama
The Little Sisters of the Poor could have gone the route of many big corporations by grandfathering their plan to avoid the new requirements, but the Little Sisters trusted the President’s promise to protect their religious beliefs. Now, HHS is telling the Little Sisters they will be fined $70 million/year unless they change their healthcare plan to start offering the ella pill, which ends a pregnancy one week after sex.
Reasonable Religious Concern
Regardless of one’s position on abortion, we can all understand why Catholic nuns would object to including free access to a pill that terminates a pregnancy in their healthcare plan. The Little Sisters’ religious calling is to care for the elderly poor, and that is where they want to spend their time. They do not agree with abortion and hold to Catholic teaching on contraception, but they are not trying to prevent the government from offering these services to women who want them.