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Clarity in Kansas: Lawmaker Says State Senate Won’t Back Discrimination Against Same-Sex Couples

In a rare moment of clarity, some Kansas lawmakers are reportedly hesitant to vote for a measure that would define “religious liberty” as a license to discriminate against same-sex couples.

The Kansas House of Representatives voted 72-49 last week in favor of a bill that would permit any individual, group or private business to turn away same-sex couples if providing a service would violate their religious beliefs. Read more

Straying Flock: Survey Finds Most Catholics Worldwide Don’t Oppose Birth Control

As the Catholic hierarchy and its Religious Right allies fight on against the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) birth control mandate, it seems increasingly clear that they are engaging in a war their flock doesn’t support. Read more

Thickening Pill Plot: Non-Profit Challenges To Birth Control Mandate See Mixed Results In Courts

The waning days of 2013 were a mixed bag for supporters of the Affordable Care Act’s birth control mandate, as courts took conflicting stances on whether or not religious non-profits must comply with the new requirement, which went into effect yesterday.   

Many observers are focused on the fate of secular, for-profit corporations, which claim that the mandate violates their religious liberty rights, a matter the U.S. Supreme Court will decide this year. Read more

A Little List: The Top Ten Church-State Stories Of 2013

It’s that time of year when people are compiling lists. So let’s look at the Top Ten Church-State Stories of 2013.

1. Greece, N.Y., prayer case argued before U.S. Supreme Court: An Americans United-sponsored lawsuit challenging legislative prayer in the city of Greece, N.Y., reached the Supreme Court. Read more

Contraception Conundrum: The Religious Right Redefines Contraception, Conscience, And Constitutional Law

In response to the Affordable Care Act’s contraception coverage, “conscience” has become the Religious Right’s newest mantra. Far-right groups have rallied around the claim that publicly subsidized coverage for birth control forces them to violate their consciences.

So it’s little surprise the topic took center stage at this year’s Values Voters Summit. At a panel on the ACA, “Obamacare” to many, speakers decried the bill and the Department of Health and Human Service’s contraceptive mandate in particular as a terrific blow to religious liberty.
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Tyranny: At The Values Voter Summit, A Heavy Word Is So Lightly Thrown

Yesterday my colleague Simon Brown offered some thoughts on the Religious Right's  Values Voter Summit, which he attended this weekend. Read more

Protect Americans’ Access To Birth Control, Americans United Tells HHS

Church-State Watchdog Group Says No More Exemptions Are Needed To Health-Care Regulations

The federal government should protect Americans’ access to contraceptive coverage, Americans United for Separation of Church and State has told the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

In comments submitted to HHS, Americans United urged the department to reject demands from conservative religious interest groups that seek to curb access to contraceptives under the guise of religious liberty. Read more

Birth Control Mandate Is Not A Violation Of Religious Liberty, AU Tells Court

American workers’ access to birth control should not be subject to their employers’ religious beliefs, Americans United for Separation of Church and State has told a federal appeals court.

In a friend-of-the-court brief filed Jan. 25, Americans United urged the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to uphold the Obama administration’s contraceptive mandate, which requires most businesses to provide workers with health insurance that includes no-cost birth control. Read more

New Round, Old Fight: Why The Religious Right Rejects The Obama Compromise Over Birth Control

I continue to be amazed that in the year 2013 our nation continues to grapple with the issue of access to contraceptives, a matter most advanced nations laid to rest long ago.

On Friday, the Obama administration made another attempt to address the concerns of conservative religious employers who say they don’t want to provide birth control for employees. Once again, it’s not going well. Read more

American Workers’ Access To Birth Control Must Not Be Subject To Employers’ Religion, Says Americans United

Church-State Watchdog Group Urges Appeals Court To Uphold Obama Administration’s Contraceptive Mandate

American workers’ access to birth control should not be subject to their employers’ religious beliefs, Americans United for Separation of Church and State has told a federal appeals court.

In a friend-of-the-court brief, Americans United urged the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to uphold the Obama administration’s contraceptive mandate, which requires most businesses to provide workers with a health insurance that includes no-cost birth control. Read more

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