Judge Tosses Challenge to Birth Control Mandate

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A federal judge in St. Louis has dismissed one of the nearly three dozen lawsuits against the contraceptive mandate in the President Barack Obama's healthcare overhaul.

That suit was filed by The American Center for Law and Justice on behalf of Industrial Holdings. Business owner Frank O'Brien contended that requiring workplace health plans to cover birth control violates his Catholic faith.

The ACLJ has appealed Judge Carole Jackson's ruling to dismiss the suit.

Still, Jay Sekulow, ACLJ president, predicts the challenges against the mandate will reach the U.S. Supreme Court in two years, unless Republican challenger Mitt Romney is elected president and repeals it.

Sekulow discussed the mandate in a panel discussion with the Heritage Foundation that also included the Rev. Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission.

"I think this is a significant encroachment on religious liberty," Sekulow said. "I think the Obama administration was aware of that. And that is why they ultimately gave way to the exemption for churches. But that, in my view, did not go far enough."

Tyndale Sues

Meanwhile, another Christian-owned business has filed suit against the contraceptive mandate.

The owners of Tyndale House Publishers say providing pills that induce abortion violates their religious principles.

The Alliance Defending Freedom filed the suit Monday on behalf of the business.

The ADF's Matt Bowman called it "ridiculous and arbitrary" for the government to decide the company isn't eligible for an exemption.

"Bible publishers should be free to do business according to the book that they publish," Bowman said.

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