Supremes To Weigh In On Businesses That Pray Or Prey

So unsurprisingly, since lower courts have split, the Supreme Court has indeed decided to hear two cases involving the Affordable Care Act’s contraception coverage mandate and its impact on for-profit corporations owned by people claiming a religious objection to the law.

For purposes of a potentially wide-ranging decision, it’s convenient that one case–the Hobby Lobby case where the Tenth Circuit ruled in the employer’s favor–involves a claim under the statutory Religious Freedom Restoration Act–while the other–where the Third Circuit ruled against a Mennonite owned cabinet maker–involves a “free exercise of religion” constitutional claim.

According to SCOTUSblog’s Lyle Denniston, oral arguments in these cases will probably be heard in March. That’s plenty of time for us all to wrangle over the implications of companies that deny employees benefits on religious grounds: are they praying or preying?

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.