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EWTN - Global Catholic Network Sues U.S. Government

(23 posts)
  • Started 2 years ago by Craig_Adams
  • Latest reply from NoParty

  1. This from All Access:

    -------------------------------------------EWTN Sues U.S. Government-------------------------------------------

    EWTN GLOBAL CATHOLIC NETWORK (EWTN) filed a lawsuit on FEBRUARY 9th in U.S. DISTRICT COURT in BIRMINGHAM, AL against the DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES (HHS), HHS Secretary KATHLEEN SEBELIUS, and other government agencies.

    The lawsuit is seeking to stop the imposition of a contraception mandate as well as asking the court for a declaratory judgment that the mandate is unconstitutional. EWTN is the first Catholic organization to file suit since the final HHS rules were published by the OBAMA administration on JANUARY 20th.

    "We had no other option but to take this to the courts," said EWTN Pres./CEO MICHAEL P. WARSAW. "Under the HHS mandate, EWTN is being forced by the government to make a choice: either we provide employees coverage for contraception, sterilization and abortion-inducing drugs and violate our conscience or offer our employees and their families no health insurance coverage at all. Neither of those choices is acceptable."

    The lawsuit was filed on EWTN's behalf by MARK RIENZI, KYLE DUNCAN, and ERIK KNIFFIN from the BECKET FUND FOR RELIGIOUS LIBERTY.

    "We are taking this action to defend not only ourselves but also to protect other institutions -- Catholic and non-Catholic, religious and secular -- from having this mandate imposed upon them," said WARSAW. "The government is forcing EWTN, first, to inform its employees about how to get contraception, sterilization and abortifacient drugs, a concept known as forced speech. To make the matter worse, the government then will force EWTN to use its donors' funds to pay for these same morally objectionable procedures or to pay for the huge fines it will levy against us if we fail to provide health care insurance. There is no question that this mandate violates our First Amendment rights. This is a moment when EWTN, as a Catholic organization, has to step up and say that enough is enough. Our hope is that our lawsuit does just that."

    DUNCAN, a former LOUISIANA Solicitor General and General Counsel of the BECKET FUND, said that without a change in the rules, EWTN could be forced to pay more than $600,000 for the "privilege" of not underwriting these services.

    EWTN is available in over 200 million television households in more than 140 countries and territories. The network is the largest religious media network in the world through direct broadcast satellite television and radio services, AM and FM radio networks, worldwide short-wave radio station, website, electronic and print news services, and publishing.

    Posted on February 9, 2012 - 10:17 PM #
  2. A heroic step in the right direction to fight this tyrannical administration and unjust legislation.

    "The united Catholic opposition could be damaging to Obama’s chances for reelection, he said, observing that in 2010, Catholics made up 25 percent of the American population and were a “big swing vote in the key political states.”

    Surveys conducted by the Pew Research Center over the last year show a significant shift in the Catholic electorate away from the Democratic Party.

    In 2008, 37 percent of Catholic registered voters either identified with or leaned towards the Republican Party, while 53 percent favored the Democratic Party.

    By 2011, those numbers had changed significantly, with 43 percent favoring the Republican Party and 48 percent identifying more closely with the Democratic Party.

    An even further shift has occurred among white Catholics who attend Mass every week.

    http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/analyst-obama-could-lose-catholic-vote-over-hhs-mandate "

    Looks like there's been an 11 point shift in Catholic voter registration from Democrat towards Republican. Finally some Catholics are getting it that Obama and the Democrats are the enemy and not our friends, and this trend will only get better (for the Republicans) because of Obama's assault on Catholicism and free commerce.

    Posted on February 9, 2012 - 11:06 PM #
  3. "Peggy Noonan: Obama “awakened a sleeping giant”
    By Brian Kirwin | Wednesday, February 8th, 2012 | Politics

    Fellow Bearing Drifter Brian Schoeneman linked to a column by Peggy Noonan in his post about Obama, Catholics and Tim Kaine, but I thought her column was so blistering that it warranted excerpts here.

    Peggy Noonan, columnist and renowned Reagan speechwriter, savaged President Obama in a recent column regarding his insistence on forcing the Catholic Church to support contraception:

    The president signed off on a Health and Human Services ruling that says that under ObamaCare, Catholic institutions—including charities, hospitals and schools—will be required by law, for the first time ever, to provide and pay for insurance coverage that includes contraceptives, abortion-inducing drugs and sterilization procedures. If they do not, they will face ruinous fines in the millions of dollars. Or they can always go out of business.

    In other words, the Catholic Church was told this week that its institutions can’t be Catholic anymore.

    Noonan says Obama’s anti-Catholic tyranny may just be enough to cost him the Presidency:

    There are 77.7 million Catholics in the United States. In 2008 they made up 27% of the electorate, about 35 million people. Mr. Obama carried the Catholic vote, 54% to 45%. They helped him win.

    They won’t this year. And guess where a lot of Catholics live? In the battleground states.

    There was no reason to pick this fight. It reflects political incompetence on a scale so great as to make Mitt Romney’s gaffes a little bitty thing.

    There was nothing for the president to gain, except, perhaps, the pleasure of making a great church bow to him.

    http://bearingdrift.com/2012/02/08/peggy-noonan-obama-awakened-a-sleeping-giant/ "

    Hooray for EWTN. Who's next to sue?

    Posted on February 9, 2012 - 11:22 PM #
  4. missing_kskd

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    Posts: 13,937

    http://theimmoralminority.blogspot.com/2012/02/as-usual-lawrence-odonnell-presents.html

    ***I wanted to link the video directly, but it seems MSNBC wants to over complicate a simple direct link. Ignore the blog text, if you like. I don't disagree with the blogger, but the main point is very simple:

    The First Amendment prevents establishment of Religion. The Government cannot tell us to follow specific beliefs or rules. We are all free to practice our religion as we see fit. This is a VERY GOOD THING. An American thing.

    As a Church, Catholic leadership is opposed to basically any sex outside of marriage that isn't also intended to produce children. Their call, no worries. Any of us is free to buy into that, or not.

    As an employer, they simply must do what we require employers to do, equal protection under the law applies. Safe working conditions, minimum wages, etc...

    The conflict here is the Church as employer wants to continue to exert it's influence as a church, while receiving the material benefit of being an employer. I see this as no different from the church, acting as a church with tax exempt status, suddenly politicking, while still expecting that same tax exempt status.

    Catholics have cake, want to eat it too, essentially.

    Now, that said, the leadership position is a hard line one, but awkward as a very high percentage of women, who are Catholic, use birth control to prevent pregnancy. Deffo an internal problem, but the optics of that don't look good in this case. Let's just say overall conviction and unity on the issue is poor at best.

    Where the Church as employer is employing non Catholics? This should be no question. Those employees have no obligation at all to accept the church as some authority where it comes to basic labor rights and responsibilities, and the First Amendment is why they have no such obligations.

    And from here, it's in the courts. We shall see, and I'll follow the case, interested in where it may go. No other commentary is warranted.

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 01:25 AM #
  5. duxrule

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    Posts: 4,122

    Catholics are far from "united" on this issue. That's been proven to you on several occasions in this discussion. Doctors across the country are now weighing in:

    http://act.drsforamerica.org/sign/contraception_petition/#.TzUuksh7LQq

    It's now pretty clear that this another case of "manufactured outrage," intended to be used as a cudgel against this president, rather that being any kind of "moral stand." How do I know this? The rules regarding insurance companies being required to provide for contraceptive coverage have been in place since the year 2000, with nary a peep from the church:

    Most of Obama's "Controversial" Birth Control Rule Was Law During Bush Years
    The right has freaked out over an Obama administration rule requiring employers to offer birth control to their employees. Most companies already had to do that.
    http://motherjones.com/politics/2012/02/controversial-obama-birth-control-rule-already-law

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 07:56 AM #
  6. Attention:

    1. This is a faux controversy being drummed loudly be a few and their views are non representative of the majority of citizens. They’re not even in view with the line of the majority of Catholics; 98% of whom here in America practice birth control.
    2. The facts of the situation are being grossly distorted and misrepresented for partisan political gain.
    3. Similar laws are in effect in dozens of states and have been for years.
    4. Confident prediction: that court case is going nowhere.
    5. The loon GOP is yet again overplaying their hand. It’s playing in the middle like an attack on women’s reproductive rights and the furtherance of regressive social policies and is completely at odds with the social views of the majority of the electorate.

    I hate to disappoint you yet again, Far & Balanced. But the only reason you think this is some huge news story is the type of media you inhale. I LOVE hearing the GOP people talk about this. It’s blowing up in their faces.

    Watch.

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 08:02 AM #
  7. That was clever...Obama just mandated ( or will) that ALL US Health insurance carriers be REQUIRED to provide the services free to all women.

    You know...this is what happened in Europe with socialized medicine...exactly...so no surprises here...I asked this question several weeks ago...asked and answered now, evidently.

    Oh now we can sit back and watch our resident zealots collective heads spin over this latest development. Critics are already pointing out that by this mandate all organizations who pay for the insurance will essentially pay for contraception/abortion services..and in essence , then, religious organizations pay for their insurance too, so nothing has changed...They claim..

    Let the 'pill' wars continue...

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 11:25 AM #
  8. duxrule

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    Posts: 4,122

    "You know...this is what happened in Europe with socialized medicine"

    You mean, all of those countries that have far cheaper health care costs and far better health outcomes than the United States?

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 11:26 AM #
  9. No, what I was saying is that in Europe those systems mandated that these services ...the contraceptive/abortion issue be covered by their govt insurance for all women..or in the case of countries who allow private carrier supplemental insurance, which some do..

    I was wondering seveal weeks ago how they did it over there...and what Obama is doing amounts to the same thing...he is dancing about it all..but its rather clever...takes the heat off the religious institutions to a degree although they are still complaining , or some are...

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 11:28 AM #
  10. duxrule

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    Posts: 4,122

    So, where was the Catholic outrage in those countries? I don't recall seeing many bonfires and pitchforks regarding this issue overseas.

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 11:31 AM #
  11. Me either...and that is a damned good point..I dont remember any of this outrage at the time...

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 11:32 AM #
  12. Uncle Mort

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    Posts: 1,276

    Brilliant finesse by Obama.

    "...On Friday, President Obama announced the plan, which senior administration officials described in detail on a conference call with reporters.

    “All women will still have access to free preventive care that includes contraceptive services,” one official said. But if a religious institution declines to provide coverage that includes contraceptive services, “the insurance company will be required to reach out directly and offer her contraceptive coverage free of charge.”

    The administration argues further that because contraceptive services prevent the costs of unintended pregnancies, the rule comes with no financial costs to either the insurer or religious employer. A similar rule resulted in no premium increases in the Federal Employee Health Benefits plan, officials noted, and the White House argues this moots the charge that religious money will be indirectly footing the bill for birth control and other contraception.

    Ultimately, though, President Obama says he won’t cave on the underlying principle: “no woman’s health should depend on who she is, or where she works, or what her health is or how much money she makes. Period,” he said in Friday White House remarks.

    Women’s groups and legislative leaders reacted positively, if with a bit of dismay, to the development — a policy shift the White House refers to as an accommodation.

    http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/02/white-house-seeks-to-mute-catholic-uproar-over-contraception-rule.php?ref=fpa

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 11:41 AM #
  13. Here's an actual scandal Fair and Balanced can ignore as it does not involve abortion or defending his medieval religious institution:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/rep-bachus-faces-insider-trading-investigation/2012/02/09/gIQA21Ui2Q_story.html

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 12:16 PM #
  14. Cheap contraception is "accessible" to all. Employers and insurance companies don't need to be mandated to pass it out "free" (on the backs of those who don't use it or who are opposed to it). It can easily and cheaply be purchased by those who choose to use it, and it is not "against women" to oppose insurance companies being forced to supply "free" contraception and "free" sterilization.

    The crazy thing is that this is not really a "health" issue. When someone is sterilized it is the destruction of a healthy functioning system. When someone takes pills to alter their hormones, they are frustrating healthy bodily functions. But if you want to do it, then pay for it. The government is crossing a line to FORCE these things to be "free."

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 01:06 PM #
  15. This is not any form of compromise or concession. The religious employers are still footing the bill for immoral services.

    How stupid does he think we are?

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 01:18 PM #
  16. Medieval religious institution.

    That and many more anti-Catholic posts here say it all. There is a disdain and hatred of Catholicism (and other religions which have not compromised to please the secular world) by many liberals.

    Obama and the Democrats want to change the religion and "modernize" it. The goal is to undermine it.

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 01:26 PM #
  17. Skybill9

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    Posts: 9,013

    "How stupid does he think we are?"

    He's hoping that we are stupider than he is. (Which will be hard to be)

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 01:26 PM #
  18. Not sure why he thinks he can mandate anything... he has no constitutional authority to do so.

    "So, where was the Catholic outrage in those countries? I don't recall seeing many bonfires and pitchforks regarding this issue overseas."

    They don't have a first amendment like ours.

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 02:28 PM #
  19. edust1958

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    Posts: 1,484

    I almost had a laughing atack when I read this portion of your post, fairandbalanced...

    "An even further shift has occurred among white Catholics who attend Mass every week."

    My mind went to... "Yes, all TWO of them!"

    I think that the Catholic church is very quickly making a very good case for the collapse of the American Catholic church into a moribund institution. I left the Catholic church because it did not match what I believe Jesus tells us... that ALL who believe in Him will be granted everlasting spiritual life... NOT only those who believe in Him and happen to believe that some guy in Vatican City can't make a mistake and has some special annointing from God...

    Fairandbalanced -- if you want people to stop bashing Catholics for being Catholic then Catholics need to stop pretending that their Church is above the law and can play politics while being tax-exempt.

    I am not anti-Catholic -- I was raised Catholic -- I successfully recovered!

    I am glad this issue is now in the Courts... the Federal Government should use that venue to test the Catholic Church's tax-exempt status

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 02:43 PM #
  20. Andy_brown

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    Posts: 5,777

    "if you want people to stop bashing Catholics for being Catholic then Catholics need to stop pretending that their Church is above the law and can play politics while being tax-exempt."

    As well as acknowledging the fact that its members are not following the policies they have adopted.

    If 98% of Catholic women use birth control, who is the Church trying to protect?
    It just doesn't make any sense. None.

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 02:46 PM #
  21. “Medieval religious institution”

    Yup!

    “That and many more anti-Catholic posts here say it all.

    No, they really don’t say it all.

    “There is disdain and hatred of Catholicism (and other religions which have not compromised to please the secular world) by many liberals”.

    No, there is disdain for you. There’s no hatred involved. I find the hypocritical, intellectually inconsistent and ideologically hidebound dogma of your preferred religious institution laughable as well as colossally out of step with contemporary society; I’d have to have far deeper emotional involvement for my mockery to descend into something more dark. The fact a majority of Catholics don’t even follow your own rigid proselytizing upon a variety of subjects simply makes the irony all the more delicious. And note: You don’t have to be a liberal to arrive at the opinion you often sound like a religious zealot sans hair shirt. Or, maybe you’re wearing one?

    I'm sure there are many nice people whom are practicing Catholics. You simply do not, ever, sound like one.

    “Obama and the Democrats want to change the religion and “modernize” it. The goal is to undermine”.

    Uh, no, that’s not correct, either. It’s a great narrative though. Let me know how that works out for you in the fall when, whomever, winds up losing to President Obama.

    And while I full well realize that referencing your Grand Poo-bah of the Loyal Order of Water Buffaloes as “former Hitler youth member Joseph Ratzinger” is needlessly inflammatory, though highly entertaining, it’s important to note: its fact.

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 03:13 PM #
  22. duxrule

    vacuum tube
    Posts: 4,122

    "The crazy thing is that this is not really a "health" issue."

    Once again, absolutely, totally and completely 100% WRONG. Pretty much any doctor will tell you that carrying a baby to full term is one of the most difficult processes that one can put their body through. In addition, there are many women who are prescribed BC pills for issues OTHER than preventing birth. Once again, I can point to personal examples. My wife was forced to endure a hysterectomy about 20 years ago, not for birth control, but to SAVE HER LIFE. A niece (in her 20's) had similar surgery this week. It must really and truly suck to be as wrong as you are on a consistent basis.

    Posted on February 10, 2012 - 03:37 PM #
  23. NoParty

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    Posts: 10,770

    How stupid does he think we are?

    The Church? The cult? Zombie followers of Babylon the Great?

    You guys are stoooooooopid!

    Posted on February 11, 2012 - 11:04 AM #

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