Mr. GRIMM. Madam Speaker, I rise today as a pro-life Catholic and as an American deeply concerned with the administration's ruling as part of the health care law to require the Catholic Church, Christian and other religious-affiliated organizations to offer health insurance that covers contraceptives and sterilizations, even though it is clearly in violation of their beliefs and the fundamental teachings of the church.
I stand with Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, when he said, ``In effect, the President is saying we have a year to figure out how to violate our consciences'' and turn our backs on thousands of years of church teachings.
Religious liberty has been sewn into the fabric of our exceptional Nation. The ability to exercise our religious beliefs free of government interference was part of the very reason our Founders came to America and is the very first right mentioned in the Bill of Rights.
The current administration's efforts to challenge the conscience and reproductive rights of the Catholic Church, or any other religion, will not and should not be tolerated. I urge the President to reconsider this rule and restore the church's religious freedom.