Obama Compromise Falls Short
President Barack Obama declared Friday he's found a solution to the HHS mandate that he says will protect religious liberty but also ensure that women have access to free contraception, as he rushed to defuse an election-year issue that threatened to overtake his administration.
Al Kresta, Host of “Kresta in the Afternoon” and National Spokesman for www.StopHHS.com comments as follows:
“Today, President Obama was forced to reopen a conversation that he had declared to be closed on Jan. 20. Taken at his word, it is good to hear him say that religious employers would not have to pay for or provide contraceptive coverage. In a backgrounder press conference this morning with White House Senior Officials, members of the press were also told three times that religious employers would not even have to refer. The insurer would have to provide contraceptive coverage at no cost and would have the burden of contacting those they cover.
“It is important to remember that a press conference is not a policy. The best that we can say is that the President is now reopening the discussion and he seems to show a willingness to make some accommodations. Nevertheless, again, a press conference is not policy. He shows no awareness of the conscience problems faced by Catholic businessmen, religious organizations that self-insure, or American citizens who, for reasons of conscience, do not want to participate in insurance plans that offer contraception, sterilization, and abortion-inducing drugs.
“The only remedy that www.StopHHS.com is presently supporting is HR 1179, sponsored by Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE) and the parallel Senate Bill SB1467 sponsored by Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO).
“The most distressing aspect of this debate is that we are having it at all. Religious liberty is not a gift of the state that is graciously bestowed on us by our political leaders. Religious liberty is what we posses by virtue of our creation in the image and likeness of God.
“We will persevere in this fight until everybody’s freedom of conscience is protected.”