(UnitedVoice.com) – Why are Democrats intent on harming religious institutions? In 2010, former President Barack Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into Law (aka Obamacare) after Congress passed it on a party-line vote. Two provisions, in particular, sought to erode the Constitutional liberties of religious organizations. The first was a mandate that the medical community provides contraception. The second came in 2016 when Obama issued a mandate requiring that hospitals provide transgender surgeries under a nondiscrimination clause in his signature legislation.
It took ten years for the contraception provision to get tossed out by the US Supreme Court. In June 2020, the court ruled in favor of the Little Sisters of the Poor. Now, Democrats are back at their old game again. In 2019, a Northern District of Texas court struck down the transgender mandate. In 2021, a North Dakota Eastern Division court struck it down again. Both federal courts ruled that it’s unconstitutional to force religious organizations to provide transgender services against their religious beliefs. On Tuesday, April 20, Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra filed an appeal to the North Dakota ruling.
Becerra’s escalation pits the government against the Sisters of Mercy and the Catholic Benefits Association.
What’s This Really About?
Over the last decade, the Democratic Party took the position that any refusal to acknowledge someone different is discrimination. However, that only goes one way. Since 1787, the United States guaranteed freedom of religion and expression in the US Constitution. It’s a protected promise and a right that the founders said was given by God.
However, Democrats like Xavier Becerra reject that notion. In 2017, then-California Attorney General Becerra accused the GOP and conservative judges of targeting American’s health care rights. He conflated cancer care with abortion and subtlely alleged that religious groups were nothing more than bigots. However, during his confirmation hearing in March for HHS, Becerra used subtleties, saying people sometimes see the law differently. He added that he would seek to find common ground.
Is this how he intends to seek common ground?
This battle is purely ideologically driven. The HHS Secretary knows the Supreme Court’s position on religious liberties. It made it clear in the Little Sisters of the Poor case, and again late last fall into the winter when the high court ruled that governors violated religious rights during the pandemic.
Is The Appeal Punishment?
If the Biden administration knows this is a clear violation of religious liberties, why is it pursuing the case? One could argue their ideological filter blinds them to reality. That’s certainly possible. However, it may not be probable.
It could be a form of punishment as the administration tries to make an example of religious groups that defy them. They likely know the pending outcome. However, the government has unlimited resources to draw the case out. The two religious organizations don’t.
The sad part is that while the government forces organizations to protect their religious liberties in court, it takes financial resources from patient care.
What’s really going on here is the government is using a form of discrimination to fight against what they claim is discrimination. It’s counterproductive and ultimately hurts those who need care for life-threatening conditions.
Unfortunately, Democrats don’t see it that way. Ideology trumps all, even when it makes no sense. Their habit is to overstep the boundaries laid out in the Constitution.
Thank goodness there is a Supreme Court to put them back in their place when they step out of bounds.
Don Purdum, Independent Political Analyst
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