Last month the Supreme Court heard opening arguments in two cases pitting the Affordable Care Actâ€™s contraception mandate against the religious objections of private business owners. The Christian owners of Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties object to the ACAâ€™s requirement that employee health-insurance plans cover emergency contraceptives, which they believe constitute abortion.
The court has a whole tangle of questions to consider: Are corporations people in every legal sense? Do for-profit entities have religious rights? If so, are they overruled by a compelling governmental interest in expanded contraception coverage? If these claims by a for-profit are upheld, could employers also lodge religious objections against coverage for blood transfusions or vaccinations or against various kinds of family leave?