Now, however, liberal Catholics who voted for Obama and refused the pleadings of conservatives to recognize Obama as the left-wing ideologue that he is are beginning to realize how foolish they were to fall for the propaganda. They were warned that Obamacare would trample on religious liberty and that it would force insurers to cover abortion. Liberal Catholics scoffed. Now it is clear how sadly mistaken the liberals were.
The Editors of National Review sum up the ruling by the Health and Human Services Department:
"The Supreme Court decided decades ago that access to birth control is a constitutional right. Now, the Obama administration’s Department of Health and Human Services has decided that access to “free” birth control is a right, too. Under new HHS regulations, which the department is authorized to create under Obamacare, insurance plans will be required to cover birth control — including the morning-after pill “ella,” which seems to work as an abortifacient in some cases — with no co-pay. The rule will take effect Aug. 1, 2012, or later.The issue here is religious liberty. There is to be no conscientious objection: Caesar is telling the Church to go against its moral beliefs and fall into line.
Of course, insurance companies don’t provide anything for “free.” Any time they cover a new service or eliminate co-pays, they charge higher premiums to make up the lost revenue. So the department is forcing people who do not use birth control to subsidize it, through higher premiums, for people who do."
Michael Sean Winters, a liberal Catholic who supported Obamacare is appalled at the heavy-handed betrayal:
One sentence in the statement from HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius stands out: “The administration remains fully committed to its partnerships with faith-based organizations, which promote healthy communities and serve the common good.”Winters followed up this blog with a post in which he declared that Obama had lost his vote forever, here.
What can those words “fully committed” possibly mean? They have punched Sr. Carol Keehan and Fr. Jenkins and many other Catholics who have taken shots for this Administration in the nose. They have jumped over the First Amendment to coerce religious organizations to do something we find morally objectionable. They have given people who loved the Affordable Care Act reason for pause, great pause. They have given the Republicans a huge battering ram with which to beat swing voting Catholics over the head.I say “they,” but the full responsibility for this decision rests with the President. NCR has learned that the President called Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan, president of the U.S. bishops’ conference, this morning to tell him the news. Wouldn’t you have liked to be on an extension to listen in on that conversation. The president looked Dolan in the eye in November and said he would be pleased with his decision. I am guessing that Dolan is not pleased. He is not alone.
Thomas Peters, a conservative Catholic blogger, cannot help saying "We told you so." (Who can blame him?)
Winters is right that this decision is a huge blow to liberal Catholics who have tried to cover for Obama. But Winters is wrong that the President’s decision comes as any sort of surprise. Of course Obama would throw his liberal Catholics supporters under the bus to please his leftist secular supporters. Obama’s wedding with liberal Catholics has always been one of convenience and he just filed the divorce papers. I therefore find it hard to sympathize with liberal Catholics who are shocked by this decision, because I’ve been warning for years that their relationship with Obama was bound to end in heartbreak.But you know things are getting weird when Father Z has kind words to say about Cardinal Mahoney of Los Angeles as he does here. Why? Well, Cardinal Mahoney is bitter about Obama's betrayal too:
In probably the most expansive decision on the part of the US Federal government ever, the Department of Health and Human Services has issued an "interim final rule" to require virtually all private health plans to include coverage for all FDA-approved prescription contraceptives, female sterilization procedures, and related "patient education and counseling for all women with reproductive capacity."From what he says in the rest of the blog post, Obama has lost Cardinal Mahoney's vote too and when Obama loses a liberal like Cardinal Mahoney, well it looks like he will be facing a united Catholic hierarchy as an enemy in the Fall election. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has a response here.
These are listed among "preventive services for women" that all health plans will have to include without co-pays or other cost sharing--even if the insurer, the employer or other plan sponsor, or the woman herself object to such coverage.
This decision from the Department of Health and Human Services [HHS] is from the highest level of Federal government, and I cannot imagine that this decision was released without the explicit knowledge and approval of President Barack Obama.
And I cannot imagine a more direct and frontal attack on freedom of conscience than this ruling today. This decision must be fought against with all the energies the Catholic Community can muster.
All I can say to the liberal Catholics is, welcome to the fight against the most anti-Christian president in American history and what took you so long? But, better late than never.
As for the Evangelical Left, I can only wonder what it will take to wake them up.