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Human Events: Wednesdays with Audrey Hudson...Democrats Are Arguing over Free Contraceptives

Unemployment at 9 percent, 14 million people out of work, $15 Trillion deficit, Soldiers dying in the Mid-East, Stocks down, Housing market a mess etc... and Washington is debating Free Contraceptives...our leaders are so out of touch with the real world they are pathetic ~Bill Cleary

Democrats are divided over a provision in President Barack Obama's health care plan that requires free contraceptives through insurance provided by religious groups although they might object to the use on moral grounds. 

Democrats for Life of America says it is confident Obama will grant a religious exemption for churches, universities, and hospitals to opt-out of providing insurance that does not require a copay to purchase birth control pills.

"The Administration has no intention of forcing Catholic institutions to provide insurance coverage for services that are directly in opposition to their moral beliefs," said Kristen Day, executive director of Democrats for Life. "It does not make any sense from a public policy perspective and it certainly is not smart politically to alienate Catholic voters."

Day says the Obama administration is "under attack by Catholic conservatives who are using the proposed final rule to spread anti-Obama sentiment to lay Catholics."

But the New York Times says the "dispute has erupted between President Obama and Democrats in Congress over a proposal to broaden the exemption."

That coalition led by Rep. Diana DeGette (D.–Colo.), co-chair of the House Pro-Choice Caucus is urging the president to oppose any effort to exempt anyone, including Catholics, from the law. 

DeGette says doing so would deny critical coverage to 800,000 people working at Catholic hospitals; 300,000 employed at religious schools; and 1.7 million students attending 900 religiously affiliated colleges.

"The conscience of an employer or an insurance company should not impede a woman's access to birth control without cost sharing under any circumstances," DeGette and 64 House Democrats said in a letter last week to Obama.

"We oppose any efforts to further exempt employers from the following law," the Democrats said.

"We fully support increasing and protecting women's access to birth control," the lawmakers said. "We oppose any efforts to circumvent a woman's conscience. American women won't stand for it."

Catholics are not standing for it either and are vigorously opposing the mandate.

The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty filed a lawsuit against the federal government on behalf of Belmont Abbey College earlier this month stating that it forces the college to either violate its deeply held religious beliefs or pay severe fines. 

Although the government has already provided thousands of waivers for a variety of special interest groups including McDonald's and teachers' for reasons of commercial convenience, it refused to accommodate religious organizations, opponents said.

"A monk at Belmont Abbey may preach on Sunday that pre-marital sex, contraception, and abortions are immoral, but on Monday, the government would force the same monk to pay for students to receive the very drugs and procedures he denounces," said Hannah Smith, senior legal counsel at the Becket Fund. "This is much worse than an un-funded mandate; it is a monk-funded mandate."

To read more on the fight against ObamaCare's contraception mandate, go

—Audrey Hudson
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