Zubik let down by dismissal of Obamacare lawsuit
Pittsburgh Bishop David A. Zubik said Wednesday he is disappointed that a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit the Catholic diocese filed against the Obama administration but is encouraged it has the right to sue again.
The lawsuit said the administration cannot require the diocese to offer birth control services to employees as part of the federal health care mandate,
“We will now await in good faith the accommodation to religious freedom that the federal government has claimed it will offer,” Zubik said. “However, we must all be aware that no modification to the original Department of Health and Human Services mandate in regard to religious freedom has yet been made.
“I do want to make clear, however, that we cannot and will not negotiate away our constitutional rights to religious freedom and religious expression.”
The diocese in May filed a lawsuit saying the federal government was violating its religious freedom by ordering it to facilitate and, in some cases, pay for abortion-inducing drugs, birth control and other services to which it objects.
U.S. District Judge Terrence F. McVerry said in his 28-page opinion issued on Tuesday that the diocese has not been harmed by the health insurance law because most of the regulations do not take effect until Jan. 1, 2014.
The judge said the “defendants have actively begun the process of amending the regulations to address the specific religious objections which plaintiffs raise in this litigation.”
The lawsuit, which the diocese filed in May, named Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and their respective federal agencies as defendants.
Adam Brandolph is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-391-0927 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Male suspect in custody from New Kensington shooting
- Plum teacher held for trial on charges of witness intimidation
- Judge orders Highmark, UPMC lawyers to hash out consent decree
- Rossi: Steelers’ tarnished Bell rings true
- Santorum officially joining GOP contenders for the White House
- UPMC offering buyouts to 3,500 employees in cost-cutting move
- Tomlin gives suggestion Steelers won’t be shy about going for 2
- Tenant charged in fire that destroyed Latrobe apartment house
- North Shore access to be limited Saturday for Chesney concert, officials say
- Parkway West to see closures the rest of the week, weekend
- Vandals ruin Ligonier Township farmers’ garden