US Federal Appeals Court Rules For-Profit Must Cover Contraception
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled on Tuesday that Autocam Corporation - a for-profit entity that provides manufacturing services for automotive and medical industries - must comply with the Affordable Care Act's contraception coverage mandate.
Autocam claimed that providing contraception coverage in its health care plans at no extra cost for employees would violate its rights under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). In a unanimous opinion, the Sixth Circuit rejected Autocam's argument and determined that secular, for-profit corporations are not "persons" protected under the the Act.
Rev. Barry Lynn, Executive Director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, praised the decision. "Religious liberty is for people, not Big Business," Lynn said. "No corporation should ever be able to tell its employees that they can't have access to contraceptive coverage simply because it offends the boss' religious views." Americans United filed a friend-of-the-court brief in the case.
10/29/2014 North Dakota Supreme Court Upholds Abortion Restrictions - The North Dakota Supreme Court yesterday upheld a set of misguided restrictions on medication abortion, allowing what is effectively a ban on early, non-surgical abortions in the state to go into effect immediately.
The decision overturned a lower court order finding the law, known as HB 1297, unconstitutional and permanently blocking its enforcement. . . .
10/29/2014 Georgia Court Refuses to Recognize 40K Voter Registrations From Primarily People of Color and Young People - A state court judge on Tuesday refused to order the Georgia Secretary of State to add some 40,000 voters to the voter rolls, potentially disenfranchising thousands of African Americans and other people of color in the state.
Judge Christopher Brasher of the Fulton County Superior Court denied a petition from the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (LCCR), the New Georgia Project and the Georgia branch of the NAACP asking the court to force Secretary of State Brian Kemp (R) to process an estimated 40,000 "missing" voter registrations.
More than 100,000 voters were registered by the three groups, but about a third of those registered never made the rolls. . . .