August 15, 2022

Liberty Counsel Petitions Supreme Court On ObamaCare’s Assault On Freedom

Washington, DC—Today, Liberty Counsel filed a petition with the U.S. Supreme Court to review the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision in our ObamaCare case, Liberty University v. Lew (formerly called Liberty University v. Geithner). Liberty Counsel’s challenge to ObamaCare is the most comprehensive case pending, arguing that (1) the entire Employer Mandate is unconstitutional because Congress lacks authority to force employers to buy or provide government-mandated health insurance, (2) the contraception-abortifacient mandate forcing employers to provide free abortion-inducing drugs or devices violates the Federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the First Amendment Free Exercise of Religion Clause, and (3) the Individual Mandate forcing individuals to fund abortion violates the Federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the First Amendment Free Exercise of Religion Clause.

“Under the Employer Mandate, employers are compelled to purchase an unwanted government-defined insurance product at a government-defined price,” the petition says. “If they fail to do so, then they face fines that can be as high as $15,000 per employer per day and penalties of $2,000 per employee per year, even if they provide health insurance which does not include abortion-inducing drugs or devices,” according to the petition.

“The Supreme Court has already found that the government cannot force individuals to purchase an unwanted product under the Individual Mandate,” said Mat Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel. “It is only logical that government also lacks authority to force employers to purchase an unwanted product,” said Staver.

“The insurance mandates also require that insurance policies provide coverage for contraceptives and abortion-inducing drugs, regardless of the fact that providing such coverage violates religious beliefs of individuals and employers,” the petition explains. “If individuals and employers refuse to provide the free contraceptives and abortion-inducing drugs, then they will be saddled with government penalties. In essence, it is akin to the old adage ‘your money or your life,’ only it is ‘your money or your religious beliefs.’”

“The Fourth Circuit’s ruling contradicts this Court’s precedents and creates an inter-circuit conflict with the Tenth, Seventh and Eighth circuits,” the petition concluded. “This Court should accept plenary review to resolve the conflicts presented by this case, including whether the Employer Mandate is supported by the Taxing and Spending Clause or the Commerce Clause, and whether the Individual and Employer Mandates violate religious free exercise.”

Liberty Counsel is an international nonprofit, litigation, education, and policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and the family since 1989, by providing pro bono assistance and representation on these and related topics.