At last night’s vice presidential debate, Rep. Paul Ryan deftly raised the issue of the HHS Mandate after he was asked to explain his position on abortion.
What troubles me more is how this administration has handled all of these issues. Look at what they’re doing through Obamacare with respect to assaulting the religious liberties of this country. They’re infringing on our first freedom, the freedom of religion, by infringing on Catholic charities, Catholic churches, Catholic hospitals. Our churches should not have to sue the federal government to maintain their religious liberties.
A few minutes later, Vice President Joe Biden said something truly astonishing:
With regard to the assault on the Catholic Church, let me make it absolutely clear: no religious institution, Catholic or otherwise, including Catholic Social Services, Georgetown Hospital, Mercy Hospital, any hospital, none has to either refer contraception, none has to pay for contraception, none has to be a vehicle to get contraception in any insurance policy they provide. That is a fact.
No, it’s not a fact. It’s a lie.
Ryan then plainly observed:
Now, I’ve got to take issue with the Catholic Church and religious liberty. If they agree with you, why would they keep suing you? It’s a distinction without a difference.
Indeed, the existence of so many lawsuits against the federal government over the HHS Mandate does rather undercut Biden’s jaw-dropping claim that it poses no threat at all for the Catholic Church.
What’s more, President Barack Obama himself has never shied away from saying that the HHS Mandate would require Catholic institutions to offer their employees contraceptives as part of their insurance coverage.
In response to a question this summer regarding the religious freedom concerns surrounding the HHS Mandate, President Obama replied:
Yeah. Well it’s absolutely true that religious liberty is critical. I mean that’s what our country was founded on.
That’s the reason why we exempted churches, we exempted religious institutions.
But we did say that big Catholic hospitals or universities who employ a lot of non-Catholics and who receive a lot of federal money, that for them to be in a position to say to a woman who works there, you can’t get that from your insurance company even though the institution isn’t paying for it, that that crosses the line where that woman, she suddenly is gonna have to bear the burden and the cost of that. And that’s not fair.
President Obama is right about one thing: the HHS Mandate does require Catholic institutions to offer their employees insurance plans that cover contraceptives, sterilizations, and abortion-inducing drugs.
And so, America, the Vice President of the United States flat out lied to you last night. What are you going to do about it?
Make your voice heard on October 20 at the nationwide Stand Up for Religious Freedom Rally, and send a message to President Obama that you don’t like it when he and his administration launch an unprecedented attack on religious freedom—and then baldly deny they ever did.