Last week’s Becket Fund victory in Stormans v. Selecky offers a preview of the religious freedom issues at stake in the Department of Health and Human Services mandate that all employers must cover contraception and abortion-inducing drugs in their insurance plans. In that case, explains Anneke Green,
Gov. Christine Gregoire and her Planned Parenthood cronies were defeated in their campaign to compel pharmacies and their employees to choose between their religious beliefs and their livelihoods. Washington
Judge Ronald Leighton found unconstitutional a State Board of Pharmacy rule targeting pharmacists with conscience objections to dispensing Plan B and ella, the so-called “morning after” and “week after” pills. These drugs are in the same heap of free contraceptives/abortifacients that HHS is forcing all insurance plans to cover along with sterilizations to female policyholders. Like pharmacists in the
, faith-based employers are being told to abort their religious convictions or face serious penalties. In his legal opinion accompanying the ruling, Judge Leighton asked the million-dollar question: “Can the state compel licensed pharmacies and pharmacists to dispense lawfully prescribed emergency contraceptives over their sincere religious belief that doing so terminates a human life?” The Obama administration says yes. (“Right to Refuse,” Evergreen State Times, February 27, 2012.) Washington
The Becket Fund is representing four different organizations suing the Department of Health and Human Services over the contraception mandate. Look for our interview with the Becket Fund in the forthcoming issue of The Insider.