Churches war with state over religious freedom

The state of California is using Obamacare regulations to impose its own belief system on faith-based abortion opponents, charges a new lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Sacramento.


The case was brought by the Alliance Defending Freedom on behalf of Foothill Church of Glendora, Calvary Chapel Chino Hills and Shepherd of the Hills Church of Porter Ranch.


Named as defendant is the state Department of Managed Health Care Director Michelle Rouillard, who, the plaintiffs contend, is “forcing churches to pay for elective abortions in their health insurance plans.”


“Churches should not be forced to pay for the killing of innocent human life,” said Erik Stanley, senior legal counsel for the organization. “The government has no right to demand that church health insurance plans contain coverage for abortion – something that violates these churches’ most sincerely held religious beliefs.


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“California is violating the Constitution by strong-arming churches into having this coverage in their plans,” Stanley said.


The case is just the latest against Obamacare, the massive system of government control over citizens’ lives and health practices adopted only by Democrats in Congress.


The case follows lawsuits filed by ADF and Life Legal Defense Foundation last year against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services over California’s mandate and “its violation of federal conscience law.”


The churches contend the state has not explained how enforcing the mandate “squares with the Constitution and contrasting federal law.”


“Because Obamacare requires health insurance coverage, and the California mandate requires abortion coverage in any health plan, these churches are truly left with no way to opt out of paying for abortions,” said ADF Litigation Staff Counsel Jeremiah Galus.


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