Archive for the ‘HHS Mandate’ Category

The HHS Mandate and The Creepy Government Shutdown

Tuesday, October 8th, 2013





government-shutdown2

For death has crept in through our windows and has entered our mansions. It has killed off the flower of our youth: Children no longer play in the streets, and young men no longer gather in the squares. – Jeremiah 9:21 NLT

America, not only do our children not play in the streets, they shoot each other in the classrooms. Don’t think that anyone is safe just because some of us can afford gated mansions, armored cars, private schools and the like. None of us are exempt from the times, including the looming shut down.

Tragically, some of our government leaders are using scare tactics to numb our consciences, to instill fear in us and turn our hearts away from genuine justice.

Please make no mistake about it, the government shutdown is about the HHS Mandate which if allowed will force harmful contraceptives and easy access to abortion on our boys and girls. Yes boys and girls; because when millions of boy babies and girl babies are slaughtered in the womb (since Roe vs Wade); when many more are contracepted into oblivion — generations suffer!

The HHS Showdown is about some members of Congress wanting to further empower and enable Planned Parenthood, America’s largest abortion provider, to lead our children to their demise along the poison path of chemical and surgical contraceptives and abortions. There is much harm beyond the obvious. Sadly, many members of Congress have read the entire document. The battle is for the seed of humanity, the fruit of our wombs, and so much more!

America, We The People must stand up against the lie that we will suffer, lose our homes and jobs and security if we do not agree with the poison in the HHS Mandate!

Why can’t we have health care that provides healthy bodies for our families without the death and destruction offered by harmful contraceptives and abortions? I’m a mother and a grandmother. My girls do not need free contraceptives and abortions. My sons and grandsons don’t need free condoms and easy access to abortions for the females in their relationships. They all need good education, healthy meals, decent homes and healthy morals and values.

Listen to “hidden lessons from our past— stories we have heard and known, stories our ancestors handed down to us. We will not hide these truths from our children; we will tell the next generation about the glorious deeds of The Lord… He commanded our ancestors to teach them to their children, so the next generation might know them— even the children not yet born— and they in turn will teach their own children. So each generation should set its hope anew on God, not forgetting his glorious miracles and obeying his commands. Then they will not be like their ancestors— stubborn, rebellious, and unfaithful, refusing to give their hearts to God.” – Psalms 78:2-8 NLT

In his 1967 Christmas sermon, Uncle M. L. (Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.) spoke these words: “The next thing we must be concerned about if we are to have peace on earth and good will toward men is the nonviolent affirmation of the sacredness of all human life. …Man is a child of God, made in His image, and therefore must be respected as such….And when we truly believe in the sacredness of human personality, we won’t exploit people, we won’t trample over people with the iron feet of oppression, we won’t kill anybody.”

America, it is time to stand up for truth. For me it’s not just about standing my ground, it’s about standing up and standing out to demand justice and righteousness.

It’s about having done all to stand, standing in the full armor of God!

America, we don’t have to fall for just anything. We’re better than that.






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Priests for Life Case Against HHS Mandate Moves Forward

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013





Priests for Life

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: October 1, 2013

Contact: Leslie Palma
347-286-7277

A motion for summary judgment was filed today in the lawsuit of Priests for Life against the HHS mandate. The lawsuit names as plaintiffs not only the organization itself, but also Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director, Janet Morana, Executive Director, and Alveda King, Director of African-American Outreach, and niece of Martin Luther King, Jr.

What this motion means is that the plaintiffs are asking the court to rule in their favor based on the law itself. In other words, the parties have already agreed that there is no dispute about the facts, namely, what the HHS mandate does, its impact on religious organizations like Priests for Life, or the fact that the case is “ripe” for judgment because harm will befall the plaintiffs very soon, given that the mandate will apply in full force against Priests for Life as of January 1, 2014.

It’s time, therefore, for the court to decide whether this mandate violates the US Constitution, as well as the law called the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

“The judge in our case seems ready and willing to issue a final order on the legality of the contraceptive services mandate before the end of the year,” said Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life. “We were among the very first to launch a lawsuit against this mandate, back at the start of 2012. Despite all the promises and so-called accommodations the Obama Administration has made, our moral and legal concerns have not been satisfied. We’ve waited long enough. It’s time to declare this mandate unconstitutional.”

For details, and information on how you can get involved, visit www.priestsforlife.org/hhsmandate.

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.






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Priests for Life Asks D.C. Federal Court to Halt Enforcement of Obamacare “Contraception Mandate”

Monday, September 23rd, 2013





Priests for Life

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: September 22, 2013

Contact: Leslie Palma
347-286-7277

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The American Freedom Law Center (AFLC) has asked a federal court to halt enforcement of the Obamacare contraceptive services mandate against Priests for Life.

On Sept. 19, AFLC filed a motion for a preliminary injunction in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, asking the court to halt the enforcement of the recently announced regulations. The motion and accompanying memorandum of law are part of AFLC’s federal lawsuit filed last month on behalf of Priests for Life, an international, Catholic organization; Father Frank Pavone, the National Director of Priests for Life; Alveda King, the niece of civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. and a pastoral associate and director of African-American Outreach for Priests for Life; and Janet Morana, the executive director of Priests for Life.

The lawsuit challenges the new regulations announced by the Obama administration this past June that allegedly “accommodate” religious objections to the contraceptive services mandate for “eligible organizations.” However, the regulations still require certain non-exempt religious employers, including Priests for Life, to provide insurance plans that promote and facilitate the use of contraceptive services. Priests for Life’s sincerely held religious beliefs prohibit it from providing any support for the use of contraceptive services—the very services mandated by the government as a matter of federal law. The lawsuit and recently filed motion allege that the contraceptive services mandate places a substantial burden on Priests for Life’s sincerely held religious beliefs and the government does not have a compelling reason for doing so in violation of the United States Constitution and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

Father Pavone expressed Priests for Life’s and his commitment to this fight for religious freedom. “We have been battling the HHS Mandate in court since February of 2012, and as we take this next step, we as an organization — and the plaintiffs in their individual capacities — renew our determination not to accommodate to this injustice. And we are confident that the court will uphold our position.”

According to the motion filed by AFLC, the contraceptive services mandate will apply in full force to Priests for Life’s health care plan on January 1, 2014, thereby necessitating the request for an immediate injunction. Absent an injunction, Priests for Life will be presented with a Hobson’s choice: either drop its health care plan altogether and face the consequences for doing so or refuse to cooperate with the government mandate and be subject to crippling fines of $100 per employee per day.

Robert Muise, co-founder and senior counsel of AFLC, commented: “As a religious organization whose primary mission is to promote the culture of life, Priests for Life has and will continue to suffer irreparable harm from the mandate. The so-called ‘accommodation’ for certain non-exempt religious employers announced by the Obama administration is no such thing. Under these revised regulations, because Priests for Life provides its employees with a health care plan, the mandate forces Priests for Life to provide the means and mechanism by which contraceptive services are provided directly to its plan participants and their beneficiaries, which is unacceptable to Priests for Life because it violates its sincerely held religious beliefs.”

Muise continued, “The use of contraception, sterilization, and abortifacients is prohibited by Priests for Life’s religious convictions. And this is true whether the immoral services are paid for directly, indirectly, or even not at all by Priests for Life. Contraception, sterilization, and abortifacients are immoral regardless of their cost.”

Throughout the process of amending the regulations, the Obama administration has refused to provide a broad exemption from the contraception mandate for religious employers such as Priests for Life, claiming that such an exemption “would lead to more employees having to pay out of pocket for contraceptive services, thus making it less likely that they would use contraceptives, which would undermine the benefits [of requiring the coverage].” According to the government, “Employers that do not primarily employ employees who share the religious tenets of the organization are more likely to employ individuals who have no religious objection to the use of contraceptive services and therefore are more likely to use contraceptives. Including these employers within the scope of the exemption would subject their employees to the religious views of the employer, limiting access to contraceptives, thereby inhibiting the use of contraceptive services and the benefits of preventive care.” Consequently, as the Obama administration has made clear, the ultimate goal of the contraception mandate is to increase the “use of contraceptive services” by compelling access to these services—a goal that is contrary to the very purpose and mission of Priests for Life.

David Yerushalmi, co-founder and senior counsel of AFLC, commented: “There is no doubt that the contraceptive services mandate threatens the very existence of Priests for Life as an effective, pro-life organization. The First Amendment exists to prevent exactly this type of tyrannical overreach by the federal government.”

The lawsuit was filed against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and its Secretary, Kathleen Sebelius; the U.S. Department of the Treasury and its Secretary, Jacob Lew; and the U.S. Department of Labor and its Secretary, Thomas Perez. Each department has a role in enforcing the challenged mandate.

To see the motion for a preliminary injunction and supporting statements from the plaintiffs, go to PriestsForLife.org/hhsmandate

The American Freedom Law Center is a national Judeo-Christian law firm that fights for faith and freedom. It accomplishes its mission through litigation, public policy initiatives, and related activities. It does not charge for its services. The Law Center is supported by contributions from individuals, corporations, and foundations, and is recognized by the IRS as a section 501(c)(3) organization. The web site can be found at www.americanfreedomlawcenter.org.

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.






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Priests for Life Youth Director to Speak at Anti-Obamacare Rally

Monday, August 26th, 2013





Priests for Life

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: August 26, 2013

Contact: Eugene Vigil
347-286-7277

Bryan Kemper, Director of Youth Outreach for Priests for Life, will represent the pro-life movement at a “Pull the Plug on Obamacare Rally” Tuesday, Aug. 26, outside House Speaker John Boehner’s office in Troy, Ohio.

Kemper said there are many problems with Obamacare, including a provision within the Affordable Care Act that mandates all employers, or their insurance carriers, to provide free contraception, abortifacients and sterilization services.

“Priests for Life was one of the first organizations to file a lawsuit against this unjust mandate,” Kemper said. “The suit was dismissed when the Obama administration promised an accommodation for faith-based employers. As expected, the accommodation was unacceptable, and last week we re-filed the suit. We expect to win because we have the U.S. Constitution on our side.”

“Pull the Plug on Obamacare” will begin at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday with 30 minutes of prayer outside the courthouse. The rally will then move to outside Speaker Boehner’s office at 12 South Plum St. for an hour of speeches. Protesters will move back to the courthouse for the final hour, 5 to 6 p.m.

Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, commented, “We are not against the goal of having all Americans enjoy health care coverage. We’re just against trampling people’s lives and consciences in the process of doing it.”

Also scheduled to speak are former Ohio secretary of state Ken Blackwell; Jenny Beth Martin of the Tea Party Patriots, and Brent Bozell of ForAmerica.
Kemper is the founder of Stand True Pro-Life Outreach, which has its headquarters in Troy.

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.






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Former Presidential Candidates Support Priests for Life Lawsuit

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013





Priests for Life

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 22, 2013

Contact: Leslie Palma
347-286-7277

Rep. Michele Bachmann, Sen. Rick Santorum confident action against Obamacare will prevail

STATEN ISLAND, NY — Priest for Life’s decision to sue the Obama administration in defiance of certain parts of the Affordable Care Act has drawn the enthusiastic support of Rep. Michele Bachmann and former Sen. Rick Santorum.

During a webcast on the battle for religious freedom hosted by Priests for Life this week, Rep. Bachmann said: “Who would have ever thought that in this enlightened day of 2013 that we would be forced to file a lawsuit simply to practice our sincerely held religious beliefs? But because of the bravery of an organization like Priests for Life, we, as believers, have a chance to have our voice heard in a court of law.”

Sen. Santorum, who now heads up an organization called Patriot Voices, said the battle against a provision in the health care law that requires every employer, or their insurance carrier, to provide free contraception, sterilization services and abortifacient drugs represents “maybe the most significant religious liberty case in the history of our country.”

Rep. Bachmann and Sen. Santorum took part in a webcast hosted by Priests for Life Tuesday night to draw attention to the serious threat that Obamacare poses to the Constitutional guarantee of religious freedom.

Also on the webcast was Robert Muise, co-founder and senior counsel of the American Freedom Law Center, which filed Priests for Life vs. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Monday in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. He told listeners his firm will ask for a preliminary injunction against the mandate, which goes into effect Jan. 1, 2014 and would begin to affect Priests for Life immediately.

Muise said he expects Priests for Life to prevail in the lawsuit.

“We have the momentum going our way,” he said. “We have the law on our side.”

Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, is also optimistic.

“This case can seem complicated, but when you come right down to it, it is so very basic,” he said. “Freedom of religion means not only can we live out our faith Sunday morning at church but also Monday morning at work, and every other day of the year.”

To listen to the entire webcast, go to www.priestsforlife.org/fightthemandate

To read the lawsuit, go to http://www.priestsforlife.org/pdf/complaint-priests-for-life-v-dhhs.pdf

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.






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Why I Joined the Lawsuit Against the HHS Mandate

Monday, August 19th, 2013





Stop HHS Mandate

As a staunch advocate for the unborn and an outspoken activist against the harm that contraceptives can do to women, I find it appalling that the Obama Administration would force my employer, Priests for Life, to be complicit in offering contraceptives, directly or indirectly, to its employees.

That is why I have decided to join forces with Fr. Frank Pavone, Janet Morana, and Priests for Life to challenge the Department of Health and Human Services and stop the implementation of the “contraceptive services mandate” which would force Priests for Life to provide insurance plans that include coverage for, or access to, contraception, sterilization, abortifacients, and related education and counseling.

Because such insurance plans would provide the very harmful agents are we at Priests for Life and I personally are fighting against every single day, I must oppose the HHS Mandate.

Please review the PowerPoint presentation and video to educate the public about the harmful effects of using contraceptives. To think that I or the company I work for would have anything to do with anyone being harmed from the use of contraceptives is something that I am not willing to accept.

There is also another related aspect of contraceptive use that many don’t understand.

As I said in the press release Priests for Life sent out, “[t]he Obama administration’s insistence on free contraception is an affront to civil rights.

“There are racist and eugenic roots to this thinking. Efforts to control the population always target minority and lower-income groups. We will not sit still and allow this to happen.”

Click HERE to see a copy of the press release regarding the complaint filed today.






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Priests for Life Is Back In Court To Fight For Religious Freedom.

Monday, August 19th, 2013





Priests for Life

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 19, 2013

Contact Leslie Palma
347-286-7277

WASHINGTON, DC – On behalf of the national pro-life ministry, the American Freedom Law Center filed a lawsuit today in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia challenging the Obamacare mandate that Priests for Life’s insurance plan must provide contraception, abortifacients and sterilization services to its employees.

On Tuesday, Aug. 20, at 9 p.m. EDT, Priests for Life will welcome Rep. Michele Bachmann for a Religious Freedom webcast to discuss the case and talk about how people can help to safeguard our First Amendment right to freedom of religion and the even more fundamental right to life itself.

Priests for Life was the fourth organization to file a lawsuit against the mandate in February 2012. The court protected Priests for Life from the effects of the mandate, but declined to rule on its merits because the administration promised that accommodations for faith-based employers would address the organization’s concerns. Those accommodations, released in June, still do not provide Priests for Life the protection it needs from being forced to cover the objectionable drugs and services as part of their health plans.

Therefore, the need now arises to file the lawsuit again, when the court can no longer tell us that new changes are coming or that harm to the organization is not imminent.

“As we predicted from the outset, the accommodation turned out to be no accommodation at all,” said Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life.

The lawsuit alleges that the regulations violate the Constitution and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act by forcing religious organizations to violate their religious beliefs.

The new lawsuit names as plaintiffs, along with the Priests for Life organization itself, the following individuals: Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director; Janet Morana, Executive Director, and Alveda King, Director of African-American Outreach.

“Our concerns are not resolved just because the insurance carrier pays for the services that violate our Catholic faith,” Father Pavone explained. “The fact is that Priests for Life still becomes the gateway through which people can have insurance coverage for some of the very things that our international ministry was formed to combat.”

Mrs. Morana noted that, beyond Priests for Life’s religious objections, there are health concerns as well, since the birth control pill has been labeled a Class 1 carcinogen by the World Health Organization.

“We care about our employees at Priests for Life,” she said. “We would never provide something for them that was both morally wrong and physically hazardous.”

Dr. King, the niece of Martin Luther King Jr., said the Obama administration’s insistence on free contraception is an affront to civil rights.

“There are racist and eugenic roots to this thinking,” Dr. King said. “Efforts to control the population always target minority and lower-income groups. We will not sit still and allow this to happen.”

Robert Muise, co-founder and senior counsel of the American Freedom Law Center, said, “Despite his rhetoric about protecting the right of conscience, President Obama continues his war against religious liberty in order to promote his progressive, liberal agenda. Indeed, progressive liberals view pregnancy as a disease to be ‘prevented’ by contraception and ‘cured’ by abortion. By forcing religious organizations to participate in this culture of death agenda, the Obama administration is violating a core freedom enshrined in the Bill of Rights.”

Catholic groups are not alone in objecting to the contraception/abortifactient mandate. David Yerushalmi, also a co-founder and senior counsel of the American Freedom Law Center, said: “As an orthodox Jew who objects to this mandate on religious and constitutional grounds, I can say with confidence that observant Jews are as opposed to Obama’s assault on religious liberty as are those in the Christian communities across the country. In this battle, we all stand as one.”

The Tuesday, Aug. 20 webcast, which can be accessed online or by phone, will feature special guest Rep. Michele Bachmann as well as Father Pavone, Janet Morana, and Dr. King. Other nationally-known guests have been invited. Sign up to join the webcast at PriestsforLife.org/Webcast.

“As one of the first organizations to launch a lawsuit against this unjust mandate, Priests for Life is more than ready to bring this battle to the next level with today’s new filing,” Father Pavone said. “I am more than confident of victory, not only because of the expertise of the American Freedom Law Center, but because we are fighting for what America itself stands for: freedom, and above all, life.”

Priests for Life vs. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services can be found at http://www.priestsforlife.org/pdf/complaint-priests-for-life-v-dhhs.pdf

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.

To read the press release from the American Freedom Law Center click HERE






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Priests for Life Will Seek To Have HHS Mandate Ruled Unconstitutional

Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013





Priests for Life

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 1, 2013

Contact: Leslie Palma
347-286-7277

STATEN ISLAND, NY — Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, responded today to the Obama administration’s announcement on Friday regarding the HHS Mandate:

“I do not see any change that satisfies the moral and legal concerns that Priests for Life, as the second Catholic organization to launch a federal lawsuit against the mandate, has articulated for over a year now, both inside and outside the courts. Therefore, I am meeting with our attorneys today to prepare a renewed lawsuit.

“Up to now, the courts have secured protection for Priests for Life from enforcement of the mandate. But that is not enough for us. We want it declared unconstitutional, so that neither we nor anyone else has to endure its unjust and immoral demands.”

For more information, see PriestForLife.org/HHSMandate.






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Court to Priests for Life: “You have to wait”

Monday, April 15th, 2013





Priests for Life

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: April 15, 2013

Contact: Leslie Palma
347-286-7277

Judge dismisses case for now, but protects Priests for Life from HHS Mandate; Priests for Life to re-file.

On Friday, April 12, in Federal Court for the Eastern District of New York, Judge Frederic Block issued an order granting the government’s motion to dismiss the case, Priests for Life vs. Sebelius, on grounds of “lack of ripeness.”

Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, issued this statement:

“The Court’s decision Friday does not mean that we are being forced to obey the mandate now. In fact, this same court protected us from having that happen, by having the government stipulate back in December, in writing, that it would not enforce the mandate against Priests for Life in 2013.

“Moreover, the dismissal does not mean we’ve ‘lost the case;’ it means the court is not ready to decide on the case. The court is not saying we are wrong in our arguments with the Obama Administration and the HHS. Rather, it is issuing a procedural, technical ruling saying that we have to wait before the court decides on the merits of those arguments. The reason for the wait is the Administration’s promise of further changes to the mandate, changes expected by August of this year. The Court is saying, ‘Wait and see if, once the changes to the mandate come, you still want to challenge it.’

“In Judge Block’s order on Friday, he states, ‘The proposed regulations are not fit for review since they are still being formed…If Priests for Life is not content with the ultimate regulations, it may renew its legal challenge at that point.’ This is what has happened in over 20 other cases by similar organizations.

“What do we think of this?

“The Administration has already announced proposed changes, all of which are unacceptable and do not address our legal or moral concerns. The Administration is delaying the inevitable resolution of the legal challenge, and then arguing that the delay itself is grounds for dismissing the challenge. These are cowardly games which show that the Administration just wants these lawsuits to go away. The Administration should not do this and the court should not allow it.

“Moreover, the fact is that the mandate, as it stands now, is law. Its promises about the future are not law. Nor is there any indication that these future changes in any way will constitute exemption from the coerced coverage of objectionable activities.

“What we are saying is simple: the law, as it is now, infringes on our rights, and we only have temporary protection from the damage it does. Right now, the government is momentarily ceasing its illegal conduct so that the legal challenge to it is dismissed, only to return to the conduct later. That is why we are petitioning, and will continue to petition, the courts to declare the mandate unconstitutional. And we have every confidence that we will be successful.”

Robert J. Muise, Esq., American Freedom Law Center, stated, “While we disagree with the court’s ruling, it is not a ruling on the merits of our legal challenge to the HHS mandate. Consequently, as soon as the government ‘finalizes’ its implementing regulations in August, we will be right back in court, challenging the mandate and protecting religious freedom.”

Charles S. LiMandri, also a lead attorney for Priests for Life in the case, stated, “We are pleased that we were successful in securing a Stipulation from the Department of Justice and an Order from the court that guarantees that Priests for Life will not have the current unconscionable HHS Mandate enforced against it. The Department of Justice has further represented in court that final amended rules concerning the HHS Mandate will be in effect by August 2013. If, as we expect, the final HHS regulations continue to be morally objectionable, Priests for Life will still have five months in which to initiate further legal proceedings before they would have to comply with them. We are confident that unless the HHS Mandate is amended to include acceptable conscience protections, that the U.S. Supreme Court will ultimately hold that it violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the First Amendment of the United States Constitution.”

For more details, see www.priestsforlife.org/hhsmandate

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.






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Today is the Last Day to Voice Your Support for Religious Freedom

Monday, April 8th, 2013





Action_Alert_Flag

The HHS contraception mandate has received “more comments than any other regulatory proposal on any subject government-wide” according to the Sunlight Foundation. Today is the final day for public comment on the proposal to require businesses and non-profit charities of more than 50 employees to provide health insurance coverage for abortion-causing “contraceptives” and sterilization.

To make your voice heard please click HERE






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