President Barack Obama bragged about a new regulation, proposed by the Department of Health and Human Services, that the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has denounced as an “unprecedented attack on religious liberty.”
The proposed regulation, designed to implement part of Obamacare, will require all private health plans in the United States to cover sterilizations and all FDA-approved contraceptives--including those that cause abortions—without charging any fees or co-pay. These regulations were drawn to implement a provision in Obama’s health-care law that calls for all health-care plans to cover “preventive services.”
Combined with Obamacare’s mandate that all individuals must buy health insurance, the “preventive services” regulation would require all American Catholics to buy health care plans that pay for sterilizations, contraceptives and abortions--all of which violate Catholic moral teaching.
Never before in the history of our nation has a president attempted to mandate individuals put aside their religious and moral beliefs. This a gross abuse of power and a direct attack on the authority of the church.
In comments on the regulation submitted to HHS last month, the Catholic bishops called for the regulation to be “rescinded in its entirety” and described the proposal as “government coercion of religious people.”
Last week, the Catholic bishops distributed an insert for placement in church bulletins all across the country. It called on Catholics to contact HHS to object to the regulation. On their website the bishops are now asking Catholic to write Congress to urge members to support legislation that would overturn the regulation.