The State of Alabama is siding with the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) in its court challenge of the federal government’s mandate for universal coverage of contraception and certain abortion-inducing drugs. Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange stated that this mandate is not only antithetical to the U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment and the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act, but it requires state officials to regulate insurance in violation of Alabama law. He declared:
The freedom of religion, and to believe as one sees fit, is our “first freedom” under the United States Constitution. The people of Alabama have recognized the importance of this freedom and have enshrined it in their Constitution as well. Alabama law does not allow anyone to be forced to offer a product that is against his or her religious beliefs or conscience…. The healthcare law signed by President Obama two years ago is taking effect now, and the consequences are dire. The law forces the States to be used as instruments in carrying out the federal government’s unconstitutional policies.
EWTN, the world’s largest Catholic media network, is based in Alabama and is represented by The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty in this lawsuit against the federal government.
By Aaron Mercer, Vice President Government Relations