Thomas More Society petitions U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of Autocam
Caroline MacGregor October 15, 2013 | WGVU The Thomas
More Society is joined by the Catholic Vote Legal Defense Fund in petitioning the US Supreme Court on behalf of Autocam.
of automotive parts and medical supplies is owned by John Kennedy, Catholic who
is fighting the government’s requirement to provide contraception coverage for
employees, saying it is an infringement on his Catholic faith.
Thomas More Society and the Catholic Legal Defense Fund originally filed suit
alongside Autocam against the US Department of Health and Human Services.
company currently provides full health coverage and employees who want to
purchase birth control can do so independently.
Prior to the government’s
implementation of the HHS mandate, Autocam‘s insurance plan with Blue
Cross/Blue Shield of Michigan specifically excluded contraception,
sterilization, abortion, and abortion-inducing drugs.
Kennedy and family
members who are part owners in the business want Justices to rule the
government’s requirement to provide contraceptive coverage, the so-called
abortion pill, and sterilization, is unconstitutional.
Tom Brejcha, president
and chief counsel of the Thomas More Society, says forcing citizens to
violate their religious beliefs, equates to a mockery of religious freedom on
the part of the government. Cut?
claims Autocam is protected by the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which
prohibits the federal government from preventing the free exercise of religion
absent a compelling reason for doing so. The petitioners say providing
insurance for birth control does not qualify as a compelling interest. Even if
deemed compelling, the government could provide services or products free of
charge, or subsidize their cheap and easy accessibility, without burdening an
individual’s religious liberties.
decision in September, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals rejected Autocam’s
appeal on the grounds that conducting business for profit is separate from the
religious beliefs of the business owners.
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