Catholic Health Association Joins US
Bishops in HHS Fight
Catholic Health Association says it is still
concerned with edict.
A key supporter
is abandoning the Obama camp. The Catholic Health Association has
withdrawn its support for Obama's contraception mandate, which
religious groups and First Amendment advocates say violates the
Constitution and freedom of conscience.
The CHA has joined the Bishops in opposing the
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online):
Although the Catholic Health Association (CHA) initially
supported the Health and Human Services (HHS) edict which
required free contraception including abortifacients, that
support has been withdrawn.
The CHA explained in a letter to the administration that
suggested compromises to allay First Amendment concerns were
The HHS edict originally required that contraception,
abortifacients, and sterilization be provided free of charge to
women. When religious organizations complained that this would
make them unwilling partners in immoral behavior, the
administration offered a false compromise, saying churches could
be exempted. However, the "compromise" did nothing to help other
religious institutions, including Catholic colleges and
hospitals, which would still be required to pay for such
The edict makes all those who pay into insurance programs
unwilling participants in morally reprehensible behavior because
their payments are used to finance such activities. To this, the
administration claims that the money for contraception,
abortifacients, and sterilizations would come from other
sources, but such a statement is disingenuous at best. Money is
fungible and payments in one area free funds that can be spent
The CHA originally supported the compromise, a decision which
cost it support and drew criticism from Church fathers. Despite
backlash from Obama, Roman Catholic bishops have led a campaign
both in public and in court to nullify the edict.
For its part, the CHA has asked the administration to revise its
position further to include all different kinds of religiously
affiliated institutions. The letter read in part, "We remain
deeply concerned. with the approach the Administration has taken
with respect to contraceptive services, especially abortifacient
drugs and sterilization."
Obama's response to this matters. Catholics are likely the
nation's largest bloc of swing voters, and Obama won the 2008
election with Catholic support. He has so far thanked them by
passing edicts and legislation that costs lives, money, and
freedom. At the current rate, it is unlikely he will carry the
bloc in 2012, thus leaving him looking for new supporters to
keep him in office.
It is unlikely they are out there. Obama has chosen to alienate
Catholic swing voters in favor of bolstering his weakening base.
Last month the president announced that his belief in
traditional marriage had "evolved" and he became an advocate of
the homosexual equivalency movement, a choice that makes him
even more unpalatable for mainstream voters.