As I pointed out last Friday in the American Spectator, the HHS contraception mandate is little more than a political payoff to Big Pharma. And judging from the “revision” to the mandate issued by HHS on the same day, the fix is still in. As Yuval Levin at NRO phrases it:
It doesn’t actually exempt … any employers who weren’t already eligible to be exempted. In fact, HHS says so plainly in today’s rule: ‘this proposal would not expand the universe of employer plans that would qualify for the exemption beyond that which was intended in the 2012 final rules.” It is still the case that essentially only houses of worship are exempted.’
In other words:
Private employers who have religious objections to the requirement are offered no relief, and religious employers that are not houses of worship, like Wheaton College or your local Catholic hospital, are still required to provide employees with health insurance the gives them access to abortive and contraceptive drugs despite their conscientious objections.
This is another mandate that will end up being thrashed out by the Supreme Court. The Obama administration is, of course, being sued by multiple entities over this thing and the HHS has lost most of the lower court and appeals court battles. We’ll see who wins the war.