DeGette, Nadler to Introduce Response to Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby Decision
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Rep. Diana DeGette (CO-01), co-chair of the House Pro-Choice Caucus, and Rep. Jerrold Nadler (NY-10), a leader in the fight for the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) of 1993, announced that they will introduce legislation in response to Monday’s Supreme Court ruling in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby. They will ensure that for-profit employers cannot use RFRA to override women’s access to contraception.
“Congress never intended RFRA to be used by employers as a means of interfering with private health care choices of their employees,” said Reps. DeGette and Nadler. “The law kept in place the core principle that religion does not excuse for-profit businesses from complying with our nation’s laws. It is now up to Congress to ensure that the Court’s ruling does not interfere with access to critical preventive health care services.
“While the majority opinion misunderstands the importance of contraceptive coverage for women’s health when Justice Alito wrote that their decision would have ‘precisely zero’ impact, we believe Congress can and should take action,” Reps. DeGette and Nadler added. “In reality, women working for many for-profit corporations will now need new insurance coverage for contraception, and we can ensure they can still access this essential health service through legislation.”
While the U.S. House is currently not in session, Reps. DeGette and Nadler have begun working with their colleagues to draft legislative language and plan to introduce bills as soon as possible. While drafting is underway, Reps. DeGette and Nadler expect to have two separate pieces of legislation, each addressing one of the issues raised by Monday’s decision.
Congresswoman Diana DeGette