U.S. Senator John Boozman: Hobby Lobby Ruling Marks Victory for Religious Freedom

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) released the following statement after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that closely held corporations with religious objections can refuse to pay for abortifacients in the case of Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby.

“This nation was founded on the right to freely practice one’s religious convictions. Americans shouldn’t have to abandon those protections simply because they own a business. And yet, that is exactly what the Obama Administration tried to force on businesses like Hobby Lobby and Conestoga under this mandate. Thankfully, the Justices thought otherwise and preserved the right for business owners to object to overbearing government mandates that would violate their religious beliefs,” Boozman said.

Boozman, a strong opponent of Obamacare, has long argued that the Obama Administration overstepped its authority by trying to force employers with religious objections to comply with a Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) mandate that runs counter to their beliefs.

In October 2011, Boozman joined 27 other Senators in asking HHS to redraft the Required Health Plan Coverage Guidelines for Women’s Preventative Service to make them consistent with the principles of respect for human life, individual liberties, and personal conscience.

On February 8, 2012, Boozman requested HHS take immediate action to reverse that decision. Additionally, he cosponsored S. 1467, the “Respect for Human Rights of Conscience Act,” and S. 2043, the “Religious Freedom Restoration Act,” in the 112th Congress, which would have protected freedom of conscience and prohibited the government from imposing mandates on religious employers.

Earlier this year, Boozman and U.S. Representative Randy Forbes (R-VA) authored a joint op-ed in the National Review that argued the HHS mandate violated the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA).