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Supreme Court temporarily exempts PA religious groups from latest version of HHS mandate

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The US Supreme Court has declared the federal government cannot enforce its HHS contraception mandate against Catholic Charities and other religious organizations in Pennsylvania, the Beckett Fund for Religious Liberty has announced.

While stressing that “This order should not be construed as an expression of the Court’s views on the merits” of the overall Zubik v. Burwell case, the court’s order declares that “respondents are enjoined from enforcing against the applicants the challenged provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and related regulations pending final disposition of their petition for certiorari.”

Justice Samuel Alito issued a similar order in April over the case, which concerns whether the Obama Administration’s latest “religious accommodation” sufficiently protects nonprofit organizations’ religious liberty. The organizations contend that having to sign a form directing their third-party insurance administrators to provide abortifacient coverage still constitutes complicity in “facilitat[ing] moral evil.”

The Beckett Fund notes that this marks the sixth time the contraception mandate has come before the high court, “and the sixth time it has lost,” according to deputy general counsel Eric Rassbach. “Doesn’t our government have something better to do than fight charities serving the poor?”

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