On Monday the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in favor of Hobby Lobby in a case challenging the Obamacare contraceptive mandate.
“As applied to closely held corporations the HHS regulations imposing the contraceptive mandate violate RFRA,” or the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993, the majority argued.
“The HHS contraceptive mandate substantially burdens the exercise of religion,” wrote Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito.
“The Government has failed to show that the contraceptive mandate is the least restrict means of furthering that interest.”
In March Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan told an attorney representing Hobby Lobby Stores and Conestoga Wood Specialties the companies should pay a government penalty if they object on religious grounds to a mandatory birth control provision included in the Obamacare mandate, including a provision covering abortion-inducing drugs.
Elena Kagan said there is “another choice nobody talks about, which is paying the tax, which is a lot less than a penalty and a lot less than — than the cost of health insurance at all?”
Following the ruling on Monday, liberals characterized the Court’s decision as a partial win:
On the plus side, govt can pay for contraceptive mandate, so Hobby Lobby taxes will go to … pay for contraceptives
— Markos Moulitsas (@markos) June 30, 2014