Here’s How the White House Reacted To the Hobby Lobby Ruling

President Obama declined to answer questions about the Supreme Court’s ruling on the Hobby Lobby case this morning, so Monday morning’s White House daily briefing provided the first opportunity for the administration to react to a decision that places employers’ religious beliefs ahead of its employees’ rights. That briefing was delayed for over an hour, undoubtedly in order to craft a response to the court’s striking decision to partially overturn the Obamacare mandate that employer-provided health insurance include coverage for contraception.

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest knew what was coming, as he kicked off the briefing by telling the Associated Press’ Nedra Pickler to “kick off the fireworks.”

“What is your reaction to the Hobby Lobby ruling?” Pickler asked.

“I suspected that might be your first question today,” Earnest replied, then read from a prepared statement.

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“The Supreme Court ruled today that some bosses can now withhold contraceptive care from employees’ health coverage based on religious views that their employees may not even share. President Obama believes that women should make personal health care decisions for themselves rather than their bosses deciding for them. Today’s decision jeopardizes the health of women who are employed by these companies. As millions of women know firsthand, contraception is often vital to their health and well-being. That’s why the Affordable Care Act ensures that women have coverage for contraceptive care, along with other preventative care like vaccines and cancer screenings.”

“We will work with Congress to make sure that any women affected by this decision will still have the same coverage of vital health services as everyone else. President Obama believes strongly in the freedom of religion. That is why we have taken steps to ensure that no religious institution will have to pay or provide for contraceptive coverage. We’ve also made accommodations for nonprofit religious organizations  that object to contraception on religious grounds. But we believe that a company should not be able to assert their views to deny employees federally mandated benefits. We will, of course, respect the Supreme Court ruling, and will continue to look for ways to improve Americans’ health by helping women have more, not less, say over their personal health decisions that affect them and their families.”

The Hobby Lobby decision has energized Democratic voters, but the White House clearly hopes that by putting the onus on Congress to restore the contraceptive mandate’s protection to all women, it can engage the broader electorate. Conservatives may feel a sense of victory today, but it remains to be seen how many Republicans will line up against contraception, and how that will play.

  • conundrum

    A list of names is still not evidence of abuse. Can he also prove there was no legal justification, such as a warrant? Can he show actual llegally obtained communications which have no foriegn intelligence value? I’m sick of Greenwald revealing facts that do not show abuse and then engaging in some slight of hand to make it look like evidence, but only if you don’t think about it; “evidence” that will make the snowbots happy because it is a revelation that damages the United States, but does not prove abuse.

    All a list of names will do is further damage business and diplomacy, and warn specific criminals and terrorists that they’ve been identified.

  • content generating machine.

    I’m waiting for corporations to demand the right to dictate how to spend our paychecks e.g. the old company store.

  • Fizgig

    We are now one step closer to realizing “The Handmaid’s Tale”.

  • https://www.facebook.com/chuck.raymond.982 Chuck Raymond

    Well, isn’t this special!! The Supremes ruled
    in favor of Hobby Lobby and, in effect, they are saying “corporations
    are persecuted Christians, too” and will set the precedent for
    discrimination to be glorified in the name of religious freedom.
    Is this how democracy is supposed to work? Can lunatic evangelists
    change the pledge of allegiance to “…with liberty and justice for all
    LIKE US?” A minority of extremist fringe nut jobs can now mandate for
    the majority? We already have an oligarchy and it looks like we are
    heading for a theocracy as well.

    I’m embarrassed to witness a
    country I have always loved turn into a nation filled with misinformed
    dumb asses, hillbilly anarchists and apocalyptic fundamentalists
    bringing back the Dark Ages, as they purify the lands to make ready for
    the return of their imagined zombie Jew cloud buddy. Think it’s time to
    get my passport renewed, Norway’s looking mighty good these days.

    • kam150

      Chuck, you don’t have to be an atheist to believe this ruling to be totally BS wrong on so many levels. I am Catholic and believe in Jesus. But, I don’t believe a business is a person, nor do I believe that a business has the right to tell people what they can and can not do in their private lives. I’m as embarrassed as you are by this decision.

  • CL Nicholson

    President Obama declined to answer questions about the Supreme Court’s ruling on the Hobby Lobby case this morning…

    …..because the President couldn’t respond without a serious of F-bombs.

    • Aaron Litz

      Ha! :)

    • Tovena Dan

      What the hell does that mean CL? You sound like a typical anti-American tea-scum-bagging anti-choice hypocritical pernicious president hating REPUGNICANT to me.

      • CL Nicholson

        Uh, what? It means that like the rest of us – Obama was probably flipping out privately about the complete FUBAR decision from the Court. It was a joke man, lighten up.

  • D_C_Wilson

    “We will, of course, respect the Supreme Court ruling, and will continue to look for ways to improve Americans’ health by helping women have more, not less, say over their personal health decisions that affect them and their families.”

    Lawlessness!

  • Badgerite

    I think Ginsburg got it right. This is a “mine field” that is going to warp constitutional law into a litigation pretzel. “The universe isn’t curved. It’s totally bent” Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.

    • JozefAL

      Anyone got a way of contacting the Vogons or Ford Prefect?

      • Badgerite

        It’s a dangerous universe. You gotta know where your towel is.

      • Badgerite

        They might be reached at Milliways. The Restaurant at the End of the Universe.

  • Christopher Foxx

    The Hobby Lobby decision has energized Democratic voters

    A little early to say that. Let’s see how much energy carries over until November.

    • Tovena Dan

      You’d be surprised how many people are now energized to vote Democratic and get the REPUGNICANTS out of office!

      • JozefAL

        Evidence please. And whatever you’ve got, does it prove those folks will actually get their damn asses to the polls in November?