Alabama lawmakers praise Supreme Court's decision in Hobby Lobby case as 'important step towards restoring religious freedoms'

June 30, 2014
Representative Roby In The News

Alabama lawmakers are lauding today's Supreme Court decision that allows employers with religious objections to opt out of providing contraceptive coverage under the Affordable Care Act.

Here's reaction from Alabama's Senators and Representatives:

"Hobby Lobby is a family business that objected to a federal government mandate requiring them to pay for drugs like Plan B and Ella, which they argued was a violation of their pro-life religious views. Today's ruling is an important step towards restoring the religious freedoms that the President's health care law suppressed. And it is yet another rebuke for an Administration that does not recognize the limits on its power."

Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-AL, whose committee assignments include serving as senior member of the Senate Judiciary Committee

"Obamacare is bad health care policy, but it also runs roughshod over deeply-held religious and moral beliefs. America is a nation that traces its beginnings to the principle of freedom of conscience. The government gets into very dangerous territory when it tries to compel individuals to act in ways that violate their religious freedom. In the floor statement I gave when I voted against Obamacare, I stated my concern that the law could force people to fund abortions against their religious and moral convictions. Today's Supreme Court decision ought to cause the Obama Administration to reassess a long list of policies that many of us consider hostile to the full and free exercise of religious belief."

Rep. Spencer Bachus, R-Birmingham, a cosponsor of the Health Care Conscience Rights Act, which would prohibit the ACA from requiring individuals to buy health insurance coverage that pays for abortions and other services that conflict with their religious beliefs

"I hope this ruling helps correct the Administration's bad habit of using agency-level rule-making to interpret laws in such a way that fits its own pet policies. This time they ran square into the First Amendment's very clear protection of Americans' free exercise of religion. However, there are many more instances in which the Obama Administration has attempted to accomplish through executive fiat what it could not enact legislatively. I hope we will see more willingness from the Judicial Branch to affirm the separation of powers that is so fundamental to our government."

Rep. Martha Roby, R-Montgomery. Roby, an attorney, said she hopes today's ruling indicates more willingness on the part of the court to rein in executive overreach.

"I was pleased today to see the highest court in the land uphold our religious freedoms and values. Business owners should not be forced to compromise their beliefs for an overreaching government program like Obamacare, and I am relieved to see this strong affirmation for some of our nation's most important principles. Obamacare is one of the worst laws passed in our lifetimes. Families and seniors are paying skyrocketing premium increases all while facing fewer doctor choices. This law must be repealed, and Congress must not give up that fight."

Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Saks. Rogers, a longtime critic of the president's signature healthcare plan, recently said he fears there's almost no chance the law will be overturned.

"Today's Supreme Court decision is a major victory for religious freedom and family businesses. I hear from people across Southwest Alabama almost every day who are worried that our nation's moral foundation is eroding. The federal government should not be able to mandate a family business abandon the Judeo-Christian foundation on which their business is built. Today's decision affirms that very principle. I will continue to push back against the Obama administration's efforts to grow the federal government's influence in our everyday lives. I hope today's ruling serves as yet another judicial rebuke of the idea that our nation's laws can simply be overlooked to advance a political agenda."