The US Catholic bishops maybe about to re-think their objection to Obama-mandate, that employers’ health insurance cover must cover contraception.
The bishops are meeting in Washington this week, and while there is no public indication of their dropping their fight, Reuters reports there are small but clear signs from within the Conference that suggest they maybe re-considering what has been publicly perceived as a narrow and partisan view, as, outlined in a recent Bloomberg News Poll.
The poll, taken between 8-11 March shows Americans see the contraceptive coverage debate as not about religious freedom, but about women’s health, and the bishops’ anti-contraception campaign as the Church being anti-women.
Seen as not helping the position is a recent column by Cardinal Francis George in the Chicago Archdiocese newspaper.
In his column George accused the Obama administration of plotting to destroy Catholic institutions, a position which reportedly has made some Catholic bishops uncomfortable.
Reuters observes that by broadening their religious liberty campaign to include other social issues the bishops are hoping to get more support on a range of issues, even from those Catholics who might oppose their anti-contraception campaign.
Commenting on the possibility of the bishops broadening their campaign, Fr Thomas Reese, a scholar from Georgetown University said, ”they’re going to have to look at not just what their moral theology tells them they should do, but at what political reality tells them.”
Richard Garnett, a law professor from the University of Notre Dame, agrees, ”we cannot let it (religious liberty) be dismissed as merely having to do with one particular question,” he said.
- Newspaper for the Archdiocese of Chicago
- CBS News
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News category: World.