WASHINGTON, D.C. – Frustrated by federal court inaction and the Department of Justice blocking the way, the Catholic Benefits Association has called on President Trump to intervene directly in the legal battle over the Affordable Care Act’s contraception mandate.
“This is a problem that’s easily remedied,” Douglas C. Wilson, CBA’s chief executive officer, told Catholic News Service. “It was created by Obama’s regulatory administration and it can be undone by the Trump administration just as easily.”
In an August 18 letter, Wilson asked the Trump administration, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Justice to stop defending the mandate in court and agree to a permanent injunction protecting the plaintiffs in all cases. The letter also urged the White House to adopt, unchanged, a proposed HHS regulation, submitted in May, to exempt employers with conscientious objections from having to comply with such mandates.
The mandate requires employers to provide coverage for contraception and abortifacients, opposed by Catholic moral teaching, under penalty of fines.
Wilson said he has not yet received anything other than a pro forma White House acknowledgement of the letter.
Asked about it during an August 24 news conference, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders responded, “I’m not sure if (Trump is) aware of the complaints or any specific places where that’s being ignored.”