Photo: Notre Dame
This fight just won’t go away. Father John Jenkins, C.S.C., the president of Notre Dame, has just announced that the University will be suing the Obama administration over the controversial healthcare rule that all institutions that provide health insurance coverage must include co-pay free contraception, sterilization, and “morning-after pills” in their plans.
Notre Dame’s suit charges that the Administration is violating its 1st Amendment right to the free exercise of religion.
That’s right, Notre Dame is suing the president’s administration. It seems like a long time since they invited Obama be their commencement speaker in 2009.
The lawsuit names as defendants Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, labour Secretary Hilda Solis, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, and their respective departments.
Here is the key quote from the statement:
Let me say very clearly what this lawsuit is not about: It is not about preventing women from having access to contraception, nor even about preventing the Government from providing such services. Many of our faculty, staff and students—both Catholic and non-Catholic—have made conscientious decisions to use contraceptives. As we assert the right to follow our conscience, we respect their right to follow theirs. And we believe that, if the Government wishes to provide such services, means are available that do not compel religious organisations to serve as its agents. We do not seek to impose our religious beliefs on others; we simply ask that the Government not impose its values on the University when those values conflict with our religious teachings.
For the Obama administration this is the fight that just won’t go away. Catholic University presidents like Fr. Jenkins believe that the Administration is giving them no recourse, either drop coverage altogether and face massive fines, or participate directly in something you believe is sinful.
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