Injunction denial stands in Notre Dame contraception case

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A divided 7th Circuit Court of Appeals panel affirmed denial of a temporary injunction sought by the University of Notre Dame to block enforcement of the contraception mandate contained in the Affordable Care Act.

Notre Dame failed to convince the District Court for the Northern District of Indiana to grant an injunction blocking enforcement of the mandate. The Affordable Care Act allows religious institutions such as Notre Dame to sign a form opting out of paying for contraception, but insurers must provide such services to women at no cost to them.

Circuit Judge Richard Posner wrote for the majority joined by Judge David Hamilton in University of Notre Dame v. Kathleen Sebelius, 13-3853, that it was unclear what Notre Dame was asking the court to do, since a requirement that it provide a form opting out didn’t trigger provision of contraceptive services.

“If the government is entitled to require that female contraceptives be provided to women free of charge, we have trouble understanding how signing the form that declares Notre Dame’s authorized refusal to pay for contraceptives for its students or staff, and mailing the authorization documents to (insurers), which under federal law are obligated to pick up the tab, could be thought to ‘trigger’ the provision of female contraceptives.”

But Circuit Judge Joel Flaum would have reversed and granted the injunction, believing that Notre Dame has a strong case under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act – a position on the likely outcome the majority cautioned against reaching in an interlocutory appeal.

“I conclude that Notre Dame has shown a likelihood of success on the merits, and that it has met the other requirements for a preliminary injunction,” Flaum wrote. “I would therefore reverse the district court’s order denying relief.”



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  1. Freedom From Religion Foundation: If you really want to be free from religion, don't go to the Christmas Play or the Christmas Pageant or the Christmas Parade. Anything with "Christ" or Saint...fill in the blank...would be off limits to you. Then leave the rest of us ALONE!

  2. So the prosecutor made an error and the defendants get a full remedy. Just one short paragraph to undo the harm of the erroneous prosecution. Wow. Just wow.

  3. Wake up!!!! Lawyers are useless!! it makes no difference in any way to speak about what is important!! Just dont tell your plans to the "SELFRIGHTEOUS ARROGANT JERKS!! WHO THINK THEY ARE BETTER THAN ANOTHER MAN/WOMAN!!!!!!

  4. Looks like you dont understand Democracy, Civilized Society does not cut a thiefs hands off, becouse now he cant steal or write or feed himself or learn !!! You deserve to be over punished, Many men are mistreated hurt in many ways before a breaking point happens! grow up !!!

  5. It was all that kept us from tyranny. So sad that so few among the elite cared enough to guard the sacred trust. Nobody has a more sacred obligation to obey the law than those who make the law. Sophocles No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we ask him to obey it. Obedience to the law is demanded as a right; not asked as a favor. Theodore Roosevelt That was the ideal ... here is the Hoosier reality: The King can do no wrong. Legal maxim From the Latin 'Rex non potest peccare'. When the President does it, that means that it is not illegal. Richard Nixon