Some Catholics are truly fighting back against the HHS Mandate. The mandate, which went into effect on August 1st, 2012, requires businesses to cover certain things in their health care plans such as contraceptives, abortion-inducing drugs, and sterilization procedures. This is the case, even if it violates the business owners religious beliefs. Yet, these business owners and Catholic organizations around the country are fighting back by filing lawsuits against the mandate, Kathleen Sebelius, and the Department of HHS. These businesses want to continue to give their employees health care coverage, but they shouldn’t have to violate their religious beliefs to do so. Today, Autocam, a business in Grand Rapids, Michigan, has filed a lawsuit doing just that – opposing the HHS Mandate on constitutional grounds.
John Kennedy, the CEO of Autocam, has filed a lawsuit today, with the help of CatholicVote.org’s Legal Defense Fund, against Kathleen Sebelius. Autocam offers their employees excellent health care coverage. But now, because of the mandate, they are in danger of being forced to drop that coverage because the owner is forced by the mandate to cover things that go against his Catholic beliefs. This is immoral and unconstitutional. So he is fighting back.The thing about Autocam is that they aren’t just some business suing because they have standing. They actually offer a fantastic plan to their employees and they are considered one of the “healthiest” businesses in Michigan. Crain’s Business recently put them on their Honor Roll of Healthiest Businesses. So this is a business that is recognized for having great health care coverage, and they want to do everything they can to continue providing that great coverage to their employees.
Here is a description from CatholicVote.org:
John Kennedy, CEO of Autocam (Grand Rapids, MI), is one of the brave business owners fighting back against the HHS Mandate. As a Catholic, the things mandated to be covered within the health care plans that John provides his associates are contrary to John’s deeply held religious beliefs. So John, together with CatholicVote, is fighting back.
On Monday, October 8th, 2012, John Kennedy, through the CatholicVote.org Legal Defense Fund, filed suit against the Department of Health and Human Services, and its Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (a Catholic). The purpose of the suit is to compel the court to strike down the mandate as unconstitutional.
John has also filmed a web-video and television advertisement that informs others about this fight. The video is being circulated to national media, will be featured on the CatholicVote.org website, and will air on television on several stations around the country between now and the election.
From the looks of things, it appears as if Autocam, John Kennedy, and CatholicVote are “all in.” This isn’t just some filing in a court somewhere, this is a full-court press. Lawsuit, video, new media push, etc… This is a business owner, and more importantly a Catholic, placing his conviction of faith front and center for the world to see. He is living St. Thomas More’s – “the King’s good servant, but God’s first.” If only there were more Kennedys in this world…
It will be interesting to see where this goes, and it is great to see that CatholicVote is again leading the way in the Catholic-political arena. These lawsuits are crucial to making sure that this unconstitutional mandate is fought from every possible angle. It is also crucial for the election in November. Catholics must understand the gravity of this election. Sure Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan aren’t perfect, but when they make the mandate and Obamacare “Day 1” objectives, they realize what is at stake and what is important.
For those legal geeks amongst us, you can find the lawsuit complaint here.