BDF briefs expose the ACA’s “Tax on Pro-Life Conscience.” Obamacare’s individual mandate not only forces individuals into private purchases with the threat of a tax penalty, it also mandates individuals to either pay a separate personal payment for surgical abortion coverage or include abortifacient drugs, or both, without exemption for individual’s religious or moral objections.
Read the BDF amicus brief filed in the U.S. Supreme Court case of Susan B. Anthony v. Driehaus that surveys exactly how the ACA allowed and implements taxpayer funded abortion.
June 14, 2014. U.S. Supreme Court ruled 9-0 that Susan B. Anthony List could challenge the constitutionality of an Ohio law penalizes free speech — in this case, speech about voting for abortion in Obamacare.
In Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus, a congressman who lost his bid for re-election in the 2010 mid-term elections reported a “false claim” under Ohio law when Susan B. Anthony List advertised that his vote for Obamacare was a vote for tax-payer funded abortion. The Supreme Court held that the free speech challenge to that law is able to be heard even though Mr. Driehaus is no longer in office.
In a parellel suit in the U.S. Sixth Circuit, the congressman is pursuing a defamation lawsuit against Susan B. Anthony List.
Bioethics Defense Fund was asked to write the amicus brief to chronicle for the Supreme Court and the Sixth Circuit how abortion was allowed and then implemented in Obamacare.
“Every member of Congress was repeatedly advised that taxpayer funding of abortion could only be avoided by including a Hyde-like amended in the ACA,” said BDF’s Dorinda Bordlee. “Pro-life groups were right from the beginning that the President’s executive order was meaningless. No person or group should be penalized for having the courage to say that the emporer has no clothes.”
- Read the BDF amicus brief surveying abortion in Obamacare for the U.S. Supreme Court;
- Read a press release about the companion brief in the U.S. Sixth Circuit.
RADIO AND TV INTERVIEWS BELOW. FULL TEXT of BDF 2012 U.S. Supreme Court Amicus Brief here: file_606.pdf
Nikas and Bordlee Interviewed in NRO
National Review Online’s Kathryn Jean Lopez interviews BDF’s Nikas and Bordlee about the Supreme Court’s 2012 Obamacare ruling.
A ‘Tax on Pro-Life Conscience’
That’s what Bioethics Defense Fund attorneys Nikolas T. Nikas and Dorinda C. Bordlee are calling the impact of today’s Supreme Court ruling on Americans who happen to oppose abortion. They answered some questions about just what they mean over e-mail this afternoon.
March 12, 2012: IT’S OFFICIAL: HHS ISSUES FINAL RULE ON COLLECTING ABORTION PREMIUMS IN OBAMACARE EXCHANGES: The Obama administration has issued a final HHS rule regulating the abortion premium requirements in the 2014 health insurance exchanges. (Note: This is an additional HHS reg that is separate from the HHS contraception/sterilization/abortifacient drug mandate.) Learn more about the HHS abortion premium reg on this NRO post and this Lifenews article quoting BDF’s Nikas and Bordlee.
Hear Dorinda Bordlee explain Obamacare’s hidden Abortion Premium Mandate on the Laura Ingraham Show with Raymond Arroyo guest hosting:
Partial transcript of radio interview here.
BDF’s Dorinda Bordlee on EWTN’s The World Over
Sebelius Praises Abortion Accounting Trick in Senate Bill
Bioethics Defense Fund and co-counsel file amicus brief for 7 medical groups exposing how Obamacare “abortion premium mandate” violates the Free Exercise Clause
Washington, D.C. February 13, 2012. The individual mandate not only forces individuals into private purchases, it also effectively mandates personal payments for surgical abortion coverage, without exemption for individual’s religious or moral objections. This is the argument presented by seven medical organizations in an amicus brief filed today in the U.S. Supreme Court by lead counsel Bioethics Defense Fund (BDF), along with several leading public-interest legal organizations.
BDF’s Supreme Court filing presents a novel argument based on the Obamacare Act’s lack of conscience protections. BDF president and general counsel Nikolas T. Nikas pointed to the brief’s visual imagery: “Like a Russian nesting doll, the individual mandate has nestled within it a hidden, but equally unconstitutional scheme that effectively imposes an ‘abortion premium mandate’ that violates the free exercise rights of millions of Americans who have religious objections to abortion.”
Set to go into effect in 2014, the unconstitutional provisions found in Section 1303 of the Obamacare Act compel enrollees in certain health plans to pay a separate abortion premium from their own pocket, without the ability to decline abortion coverage based on religious or moral objection.
According to BDF senior counsel Dorinda Bordlee, “the recently implemented HHS contraceptive mandate is simply another aspect of Obamacare in action.” The amicus brief filed today informs the Supreme Court that “[e]ven beyond the recent HHS mandate, the abortion premium mandate provisions found in the original Act are sufficient alone to substantially burden [Americans’] free exercise of religion.”
Nikas referenced the opportune timing of the Court’s briefing schedule, noting, “Bioethics Defense Fund and our co-counsel are pleased at this critical point to call the Court’s attention to the direct assault on religious liberty effected by both the abortion premium mandate found in the Act itself, as well as this first of many HHS mandates that the Act authorizes the Secretary of Health to implement without congressional approval.”
Bioethics Defense Fund counsel developed the novel argument when the brief was first filed in the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in support of 26 state attorneys general. The theory was developed with the assistance of co-counsel Mark Rienzi, senior counsel of The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty and associate law professor at the Columbus School of Law at the Catholic University of America. Additional co-counsel on the Supreme Court brief include Alliance Defense Fund, Americans United for Life, and Life Legal Defense Foundation.
The seven pro-life medical organizations represented as friends-of-the-court include American College of Pediatricians, Christian Medical and Dental Association, American Assoc. of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Catholic Medical Association, Physicians for Life, National Assoc. of Prolife Nurses, and Medical Students for Life of America.
Read the brief here.
Dorinda C. Bordlee, BDF Senior Counsel
Obamacare Litigation History
Amicus Briefs Expose “Abortion Premium Mandate” And How ACA Authorizes Taxpayer Funded Abortion
July 11, 2013. U.S. Fourth Circuit rules favorably on procedural issues, but unfavorably on the merits. Read about our Legatus/CMA amicus brief and review a summary of the Fourth Circuit ruling that clears the way for the comprehensive Obamacare challenge to return to the U.S. Supreme Court if they grant the petition to be filed by Liberty Counsel.
March 7, 2013. BDF filed a key amicus brief in the U.S. Fourth Circuit on behalf of 281 Members of Legatus and the Catholic Medical Association, laying out exactly how the “Abortion Premium Mandate” and the “HHS Abortifacient Drug Mandate” invalidate the Individual Mandate as an unconstitutional “tax on pro-life conscience.” Download a full copy of the Legatus-CMA amicus brief. Or view only the “Summary of the Argument” here.
February 2013. Three weeks after the U.S. Presidential election, the U.S. Supreme Court revived a 2010 comprehensive challenge to Obamacare by reviving the case of Liberty University v. Geithner and sending it back to the U.S. Fourth Circuit. In February, the Fourth Circuit set a briefing schedule. BDF attorneys explain how the Supreme Court revived this key case in Legatus Magazine.
June 28, 2012. BDF lawyers Nikolas Nikas and Dorinda Bordlee have read and analyzed Obamacare decision, and their response is entitled, “Obamacare Ruling Effectively Imposes a Tax on Pro-Life Conscience.” You can read it by clicking here.
March 27, 2012. U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on the individual mandate.
March 12, 2012. HHS Final Rule issued establishing state health insurance exchanges and details on abortion premium mandate without religious exemption in certain plans.
February 13, 2012. Download and read BDF’s Supreme Court amicus brief filed Feb. 13, 2012 showing how the the individual mandate violates religious liberty and conscience rights. See the press release below the video.
August 12, 2011. 11th Circuit strikes down Obamacare “individual mandate,” calling it “an unprecedented exercise of congressional power.” This decision created a split in the Circuits, prompting review by the U.S. Supreme Court.