Bench Memos

JEP Files Supreme Court Amicus Brief in Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood

Today, the Judicial Education Project filed an amicus brief in support of the plaintiffs challenging the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive mandate. The plaintiffs are two hardworking families who built businesses from the ground up in accordance with their religious beliefs, and who object on religious grounds to providing certain contraceptives mandated by Kathleen Sebelius’s Department of Health and Human Services. 

This is a very significant case for the United States. At stake are conscience rights, not only for these plaintiffs, but for all people of faith whose religious beliefs govern the way they do business or earn a living. Our brief argues that the reasons given by the government for forcing these objectors to provide free contraceptives to employees are insufficiently important to require overriding the objectors’ conscience rights. 

To sum up, if the government can pick and choose who gets a religious exemption and who doesn’t, and explain that choice based on the vaguest of goals, religious liberty is basically a dead letter. The Supreme Court has a chance to make sure that doesn’t happen.

Read our brief here.

Carrie Severino — Carrie Severino is chief counsel and policy director to the Judicial Crisis Network.

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