In the wake of the recent decision by the Obama administration requiring insurance providers -- including faith--based employers -- to cover sterilization and abortion--inducing services, Congressman Michael McCaul (R--TX) signed on to the Religious Liberty Protection Act of 2012. H.R. 3982 would lift the requirement of religious organizations to provide coverage for services that violate their moral conscience.
"Like President Obama, I was elected to defend the Constitution of the United States. If the president will not strike down this unconscionable requirement, then the Congress will," said Congressman McCaul.
Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare), the Department of Health and Human Services has the authority to provide a list of detailed services to be included as "essential health benefits" and "preventative health services" that all health plans are required to cover. HHS included in this list free sterilization and abortion methods. Last month, HHS affirmed it would not broaden a narrow exemption to include religiously-affiliated schools, hospitals, charities and other organizations.
"This immoral attack on more than 200 years of religious freedom underscores the misguided and unconstitutional approach that the Obama administration has taken in reforming America's health care system," Rep. McCaul said.
The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution provides general protection for individuals' religious beliefs and practices. Until the enactment of the PPACA the federal government has never sought to impose specific health care coverage or care requirements that infringe on the conscious rights of insurers, purchasers of insurance, plan sponsors or beneficiaries.