(Update: Hobby Lobby has appealed to the Tenth Circuit for emergency relief.)
A federal judge denied Hobby Lobby's request for an injunction against the Affordable Care Act's (ACA) contraceptive mandate on Monday, ruling that the arts-and-crafts giant must cover emergency contraceptives in its insurance policies even though it believes the pills cause abortions.
U.S. district judge Joe Heaton rejected both First Amendment and Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) claims by Hobby Lobby and its well-known evangelical owners, the Green family. Heaton ruled that "secular, for-profit corporations do not have free exercise rights."
"The Greens do have such rights," Heaton's ruling stated, "but are unlikely to prevail as to their constitutional claims because the preventive care coverage regulations ... are neutral laws of general applicability which are rationally related to a legitimate governmental objective."
The ruling stands in contrast ...1