Hobby Lobby Arguments Expose Liberal Deception on Little Sisters of the Poor

Barb Wire

When the arguments for the Hobby Lobby case at the Supreme Court were over, liberals who swore up and down that the Little Sisters of the Poor already get an exemption from the contraceptive mandate in Obamacare were exposed.

Here is what Solicitor General Donald Verrilli, who represents the federal government, argued:

[I]t’s important to understand, and I want to walk through the — this question of exemptions very carefully because I think there’s a lot of confusion here that needs to be cleared up, that all that the government has done is say that churches, because of that special solicitude, which the Court recognized in Hossana-Tabor, churches get an exemption.

The nonprofit religious organizations don’t get an exemption. There’s accommodation there provided, but that accommodation results in the employees receiving access to the contraceptive coverage, so that doesn’t diminish the government’s compelling interest. (Emphasis mine)

So the truth finally comes out from their mouths. Nonprofits, like the Little Sisters of the Poor, do not (as we have said many times) get an exemption. The government believes the Little Sisters of the Poor are not religious enough to deserve an exemption, like churches.

But that’s not true according to the liberal media.

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Sally Kohn over at CNN wrote, “The Little Sisters of the Poor order, based in Colorado, is already exempt from Obamacare’s requirement …”

When Justice Sonia Sotomayor granted a temporary injunction to the sisters, Katie McDonough at Salon saw no need for the move since they had “previously noted, the Obama administration has created an exemption for religious nonprofits like the Little Sisters.”

They could just be misinformed, but I don’t believe that’s the case. It seems they are purposely muddying the waters because they see how ridiculous it is for the Obama Administration to argue the Little Sisters of the Poor are not religious enough to deserve an exemption. The vows the sisters take (of poverty and chastity, among others) would make them even more religiously devout than many churches. The liberal media is trying to help a President they really believe in save face with the American people.

Take Emily Bazelon, who is “a Slate senior editor and the Truman Capote Fellow at Yale Law School.” With such credentials, you know she is fully aware of the intricacies and nuances of the law. Yet, she wrote:

When the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, among others, kicked up a fuss about the contraception mandate back in 2011, the Obama administration created two different exemptions. The first is for houses of worship … The second kind is for religious nonprofit organizations, and this one is more like a partial accommodation.

Ms. Bazelon at least acknowledges the two routes, but she says the sisters get an exemption that is “like” a partial accommodation. The truth is exactly the opposite of that. The sisters get an accommodation that Bazelon can argue is “like” an exemption, but it is certainly not an exemption. That is precisely the point SG Verrilli was making before the Supreme Court.

But these media personalities are taking their cue from the government itself, which has tried to pull off the same deception before the court in the Little Sisters of the Poor case. “Nuns already can get contraception exemption, government argues,” read the title of the piece at The Business Journals relating the government’s position in that case.

“With the stroke of their own pen, applicants can secure for themselves the relief they seek from this court — an exemption from the requirements of the contraceptive-coverage provision — and the employer-applicants’ employees (and their family members) will not receive contraceptive coverage through the plan’s third-party administrator either,” the Justice Department contends.

So the government’s argument is that the Little Sisters of the Poor can’t get an exemption but they get an exemption. Hard to argue with liberal logic, isn’t it? Let’s pray the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals sees right through the deception and grants the sisters the relief they deserve.

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.

Mario Díaz, Esq., serves as Concerned Women for America's (CWA) Legal Counsel. Mr. Diaz is a Constitutional Law expert who focuses on CWA's core issues: religious liberty, sanctity of human life, defense of the family, sexual exploitation, education, national sovereignty, and support for Israel. His columns appear regularly in a variety of publications, including The Washington Times, Human Events, WorldNetDaily, American Thinker and The Blaze.

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