Hobby Lobby and Mardel on Wednesday appealed an Oklahoma City federal judge's refusal to block enforcement of a mandate in the Affordable Care Act that requires the Oklahoma City companies to provide insurance coverage for contraception to 13,000 employees and their dependents.
The brief claims U.S. District Judge Judge Joe Heaton's decision on Monday exposes the firm and its owners “to the precise predicament religious liberty laws exist to prevent — enormous government pressure to violate their sincere religious beliefs.”
Hobby Lobby founder David Green and his family own and operate the companies.
In legal filings, they refer to contraception known as the day-after pill and morning-after pill and some intrauterine devices that prevent a fertilized egg from implanting in the womb as “abortion-causing drugs and devices.”
The Green family has no objection to other contraceptives, and will continue covering its employees' costs for those.
Kyle Duncan, general counsel for the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which represents Hobby Lobby, said the insurance requirement puts the Green family in a severe conflict.
“Every American, including family business owners like the Greens, should be free to make a living without forfeiting their religious beliefs,” Duncan said.