Victory for the First Amendment

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Today, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of [1] religious liberty. It’s as simple as that. All Americans should be proud of the court’s decision to uphold the standard of freedom set forth in the First Amendment. Namely, that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…”

The case, Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, had less to do about health care and more to do about how, and when the First Amendment protection of freedom of religion applies in the business world. The employer mandate in Obamacare sought to force employers to offer contraception coverage that violated their religious beliefs.

Yet the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that companies cannot be forced to offer insurance coverage for products that violate religious convictions. While the ruling narrowly applies only to closely-held corporations like family-owned businesses, it’s a good step in the right direction for getting government out of our private lives and especially our health care.

Democrats will no doubt try to spin this decision as a loss for women’s rights, but that misses the larger principle of this debate. In the Hobby Lobby case, the First Amendment was really on trial.

We know firsthand how easy it is to take the First Amendment for granted, only to wake up one day and realize the government has slowly chipped away your basic freedoms and your rights. When the Internal Revenue Services targeted Tea Party Patriots for extra scrutiny, our right to freedom of speech was violated.

Today’s ruling is a victory for all Americans – business owners and all – who want to live and practice their faith as they see fit. We used to take that freedom for granted in this country. Now we are left to fight for it in the Supreme Court.