Good news for the craft store chain:
In a health care decision giving hope to opponents of the federal birth-control coverage mandate, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday that Hobby Lobby stores won’t have to start paying millions of dollars in fines next week for not complying with the requirement.
The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver decided the Oklahoma City-based arts and crafts chain can proceed with its case and won’t be subject to fines in the meantime.
The reprieve gives Hobby Lobby Stores Inc. more time to argue in a lower court that for-profit businesses — not just currently exempted religious groups — should be allowed to seek an exception if the law violates their religious beliefs.
Background here: basically, for “birth-control” read “‘morning-after’ and ‘week-after’ pill,” both of which are abortifacients in the opinion of the owners* and thus anathema. Hobby Lobby, which is not a franchise, is looking at hefty fines for this position; the company has been adamant about not paying for what they consider to be state-sanctioned murder**, and now that they don’t have to worry about a deadline before they’d be forced to pay an estimated $1.3 million/a day while fighting this ruling they’ll likely be litigating this case all the way to the Supreme Court. (more…)