One of the first oral arguments the Supreme Court has heard by teleconference, and one in which one justice participated from a hospital room, involved the Catholic religious order the Little Sisters of the Poor and their ongoing fight in a religious liberty case.
“The Little Sisters of the Poor again find themselves in court defending their community against attempts to force Catholic religious to violate their conscience,” the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops said in a statement ahead of oral arguments Wednesday morning.
Originally, the case arose from the controversial implementation of a rule that grew out of the Affordable Care Act. That 2010 law included a section that requires coverage of preventive health services and screenings for women. The following year, the Obama administration required employers and insurers to provide women with coverage at no cost for all methods of contraception approved by the Food and Drug Administration. The so-called “contraceptive mandate” carried an exemption for houses of worship, but not faith-based institutions.
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