Supremes send contraception mandate cases back to lower courts

Supremes send contraception mandate cases back to lower courts
(Image: Little Sisters of the Poor)

[Ed. – IOW, they’ve decided not to decide, at least for the time being.  Could have been worse.  The Little Sisters have an injunction against the enforcement method HHS insists on (the “just sign the form” thing), until there is a final decision.]

The Supreme Court decided not to decide Monday whether religious objectors must play a role in offering contraceptive coverage to their employees, instead sending seven cases back to federal appeals courts in search of an elusive compromise. …

In the contraceptives case, the justices clearly are hoping to find a way to honor the objections of religious non-profit groups, such as charities and hospitals, while still guaranteeing free birth control to their employees. But even with an extra round of court papers, no such compromise has emerged.

“The court expresses no view on the merits of the cases,” the opinion, which Chief Justice John Roberts read from the bench, stated. “In particular, the court does not decide whether petitioners’ religious exercise has been substantially burdened, whether the government has a compelling interest, or whether the current regulations are the least restrictive means of serving that interest.”

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