For John, BLUF: The Hobby Lobby Case is due to incompetence. Nothing to see here; just move along.
I know it is going back to Sunday, but Burwell v Hobby Lobby is still a hot issue. Not always does the editorial in The [Lowell] Sun get it wrong. On Sunday last the editorial was "Dems use Hobby Lobby for their phony baloney". Yes they do.
In writing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid♠ gave us two thousand pages of legislation. Surely in the process of writing this bill the opportunity to deal with the impact of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act♥ came up. Within those two thousand pages an awful lot of things were covered, including payoffs to various political entities and, as a concession to Democrat Senator Ben Nelson, wording "to give states the right to prohibit coverage of abortion within their own insurance exchanges".
How do we explain this issue not having been resolved in the bill? I give you five options, but am open to others:
- The writers just totally missed the intersection of religion and health care.
- The writers thought about it and dismissed it as being an unlikely problem.
- The writers were facing a time compression abort and had to get this done before Scott Brown showed up.
- The Democrat Leadership thought that even surfacing this would cause too much dissension amongst Democrats in Congress and endanger the Bill.
- This was a LBIED,♦ designed to explode and be a dog whistle for the
As the editorial suggests, we will be hearing about this up into November, if for no other reason than to distract us from the abolition of our national border in the Southwest (while Mexico keeps theirs).
BONUS: Blogger and Law Professor Ann Althouse has a post up on the aftermath of the decision, including in the title "#keepyourrosariesoffmyovaries". Do you think the person who wrote that realized that Hobby Lobby is owned by Protestants, who are very unlikely to be saying the Rosary?
Via the Instapundit we have Ms Megan McArdle arguing that both sides are talking past each other and not seeing the other sides point of view.
But, back to Professor Althouse, her post on the Professor Winnifred Fallers Sullivan essay, "The impossibility of religious freedom" raises some interesting questions. One of the points she makes is that the dissenters are on shaky ground in their understanding of "religious freedom". A great essay. Here is one paragraph:
That American religion is involved in business and obsessed with sex is not news. What is surprising is that those who object to this kind of religion continue to hold on to a faith in the idea that religious freedom means protection only for the kind of religion they like, the private, individualized, progressive kind.Regards — Cliff
♠ I realize that Ms Pelosi and Mr Reid provided only high level guidance and even Committee Chairmen were not holding pencils, but rather professional staffers actually wrote the legislation. And, of course the original bill, introduced by Rep Charlie Rangle (D-NY) was about housing tax breaks for Service members.
♥ The Bill was introduced by Senator Chuck Schumer (D, NY) and passed the US Senate in 1993, 97 to 3. House of Representatives wasa voice vote.
♦ Legislative Borne Improvised Explosive Device.
♣ Hanlon's Razor, sometimes as Heinlein's Razor.