DOJ prosecutor argues with judge: Obama can force your wife to act against her faith

Judge Reggie Walton

Photo Credit: Legal Juice

Tyndale House Foundation is a religious non-profit organization that sued the Obama administration last year over the Obamacare mandate forcing businesses to cover “sterilizations, contraceptives and abortion-inducing drugs.”

CNS News reported Monday that Tyndale self insures its employees, “but, in keeping with its religious faith, it does not in any way provide abortions.” Tyndale’s lawsuit claims the Obamacare regulation “violated its right to the free-exercise of religion.”

The argument of the Obama administration has repeatedly been “that once people form a corporation to conduct business they lose their First Amendment right to the free exercise of religion insofar as their business is concerned,” the article said.

In an interesting twist in the case, the article said the federal prosecutor Benjamin Berwick told U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton “that the Obama administration believed it could force the judge’s own wife—a physician—to act against her religious faith in the conduct of her medical practice.”

Walton ultimately granted Tyndale a preliminary injunction from having to provide birth-control or abortion drugs to its employees, but the exchange between Berwick and Walton is worth reading:

Benjamin Berwick: “Well, your honor, I think, I think there are two distinct ideas here: One is: Is the corporation itself religious such that it can exercise religion? And my, our argument is that it is not. Although again, we admit that it is a closer case than for a lot of other companies. And then the second question is, can the owners–is it a substantial burden on the owners when the requirement falls on the company that is a separate legal entity? I think for that question precisely what their beliefs are doesn’t really matter. I mean, they allege that they’re religious beliefs are being violated. We don’t question that. And we don’t question that that is the belief.

Judge Reggie Walton: But considering the closeness of the relationship that the individual owners have to the corporation to require them to fund what they believe amounts to the taking of a life, I don’t know what could be more contrary to one’s religious belief than that.

Berwick: Well, I don’t think the fact this is a closely-held corporation is particularly relevant, your honor. I mean, Mars, for example-

Judge Walton: Well, I mean, my wife has a medical practice. She has a corporation, but she’s the sole owner and sole stock owner. If she had strongly-held religious belief and she made that known that she operated her medical practice from that perspective, could she be required to pay for these types of items if she felt that that was causing her to violate her religious beliefs?

Berwick: Well, Your Honor, I think what it comes down to is whether there is a legal separation between the company and—

Judge Walton: It’s a legal separation. I mean, she obviously has created the corporation to limit her potential individual liability, but she’s the sole owner and everybody associates that medical practice with her as an individual. And if, you know, she was very active in her church and her church had these same type of strong religious-held beliefs, and members of the church and the community became aware of the fact that she is funding something that is totally contrary to what she professes as her belief, why should she have to do that?

Berwick: Well, your honor, again, I think it comes down to the fact that the corporation and the owner truly are separate. They are separate legal entities.

Judge Walton: So, she’d have to give up the limitation that conceivably would befall on her regarding liability in order to exercise her religion? So, she’d have to go as an individual proprietor with no corporation protection in order to assert her religious right? Isn’t that as significant burden?

Read the article from CNS News here.

 

 

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Janeen Capizola

"And though she be but little, she is fierce." And fun! This conservative-minded political junkie, mom of three, dancer and one-time NFL cheerleader holds a bachelor of arts degree in political science. Janeen@BizPacReview.com. Twitter: @JaneenBPR
About Janeen Capizola

"And though she be but little, she is fierce." And fun! This conservative-minded political junkie, mom of three, dancer and one-time NFL cheerleader holds a bachelor of arts degree in political science. Janeen@BizPacReview.com. Twitter: @JaneenBPR

  • KB Cook

    The LORD Jesus Christ was correct when He said to His followers: "In this world you will have tribulation, but cheer up! I have overcome the world." Onward, Christian soldiers!

  • Jim Hegarty

    The Supremes had ruled that a corporation was the same as an individual for funding PAC's If I recall correctly.

  • http://Facebook Ruth Kirk

    Religion has no place in Politics. or insurance.

  • CitizenPatriot

    Ruth you are correct. And that is why ACA cannot force you to commit murder in the name of healthcare. Remember, our 1st Amendment was to keep the Gov't out of our individual freedom to religious expression. But, we see where the DOJ is persuing Companies owned by individuals whose beliefs matter as to how they run that business or company. NO GOVERNMENT MANDATE CAN FORCE YOU OR I TO GIVE UP OUR 1ST AMENDMENT RIGHTS. Let's remember this is why so many people from different countries come to America.

    This Administration is so Anti-American, it borders on treason. Running thousands of guns from America to Mexico without anyone across the border, not our people or the Mexican Government, that these smuggled guns under the supervision of the ATF, a wing of the Justice Department were coming across to kill men, women and children in their war with the Cartels. Already, over 50,000 deaths in Mexico along our border and our Gov't is smuggling thousands more guns into the fight for the bad guys. Now, why would an Administration do such a thing? Easy. BHO wants to remove our 2nd Amendment Rights and by showing American guns in Mexico, he, with the help of the MSM's support, blame Americans for this action. Not only illegal, but blatantly against our Freedoms. Now, after Newtown, where another crazed individual gets a gun and goes to another, gun free zone, and commits mass murder. And, not letting a crisis go to waste, now they are acting in their typical knee-jerk reaction blaming the tool instead of dealing with the real problems, such as the constant violence kids are exposed to today, be it movies, TV, or video games, it desensitizes the reality and turns it into a game. Did you know more people are killed by hammers than guns in this country? Great Britain, where guns are outlawed, actually has a violent crime rate 5X ours. And now, attacking our 1st Amendment Rights forcing people of concious to go against their teachings and beliefs so BHO can include birth control (I remember on at least one of his multiple trips out of D.C.) on everyone, even though they believe live begins at conception and is a Blessing from God.

    These folks in D. C. are making it harder and harder for true Americans who believe our Constitution and Declaration of Independence give us all our Rights and the Fed. Gov't, under the 10th Amendment, is to be limited to certain items, and those not mentioned in the 10th Amendment are to be granted to the States or the People. I don't recognize my Country under this Administration because just look at his history and associates to realize this man does not look at America as the Greatest Nation on Earth in over 5,000 years, always willing to take Americans to Court while giving our enemies a pass. Hell, illegal immigrants will have more freedoms than American Citizens. BHO wants us all to be his Subjects, which I, for one, will Never become.

    Leave the people alone! SILENT NO MORE!

  • Uselogic

    Hmm. Wonder if prosecutor Berwick is related to Donald Berwick, O's former Medicaid/Medicare administrator? You know…. the guy who is "in live" (self described) with Britian's death panels .

    • Uselogic

      My bad. Should be….. "in love"…. above.

  • http://mcbluefire.blogspot.com Marc

    Then the answer is clear – drop the corporation. If all of America would follow and we lost corporations we could finally work towards capitalism and away from corporatism. I can't image what limited liability a doctor receives from corporate status….they can't begin to practice without malpractice insurance. Corporations – the promise of government protection – is part of the problem.